Gary's Compositions

Pipe Dream (2003) for custom MIDI wind controller and realtime computer synthesis

Pipe Dream is the second in a set of compositions exploring subtle wind instrument overblowing effects. In this work, all sounds are generated using real-time computer-based saxophone-like physical modeling algorithms implemented with the Synthesis ToolKit in C++. The algorithms are performed with a new MIDI wind controller called The Pipe. The controller makes use of a variety of sensors, including buttons, potentiometers, and accelerometers which respond to breath pressure, finger pressure and tilt. Spatialization effects in a four-channel sound environment are created through various panning strategies.


Air Study I (2002) for alto saxophone and stereo tape

This work is an exploration of subtle overblowing effects using two virtual "blowed string" physical models and a live saxophonist. The physical model algorithms were created and controlled using the Synthesis ToolKit in C++, a software environment by Perry Cook and Gary Scavone.

The saxophonist in Air Study I fingers a low B-flat for the entire piece (clamps may be desirable)1. The pitch/timbre variations are completely controlled via embouchure and oral cavity manipulations.

The tape part for Air Study I was generated with two independent physical models, each assigned to a single stereo track. Phasing effects were created by slight variations in vibrato rates and pitches. Overblowing effects were controlled via reed and breath pressure parameters.

1An alto saxophone body without holes was used for the premiere of Air Study I on 25 July 2002. Gary expresses his sincerest gratitude to The Selmer Company and Tom Burzycki for their donation of this instrument.