vectorscores is a new series of dynamic compositions by John Teske. The scores are written algorithmically so the works as a whole are crafted but the details are unique for each performance.
John has been exploring ways to express complex ideas to musicians given limitations on rehearsal time, funding, and location. vectorscores uses web technology to create scores and parts for musicians that use animation to present musical material, generate and update parts in real-time, and allow a musician’s choices to influence other players’ parts.
vectorscores is iterative and transparent, with a public code repository and the latest progress published to the website. The project is a continual work in progress, with every rehearsal and performance helping the composer further shape the works and clarify notation.
Advantages over traditional scores
- online access to scores via web browser
- use of animation
- tutorial function for education and to aid in rehearsal—useful when dealing with complex music, tight timelines and budgets, or the absence of the composer
- unique musical possibilities including: parts generated based on input, collaboration, realtime generation of musical material, etc.
- vector graphics can be scaled and manipulated without loss of quality
- Greater control over texture and density in open instrumentation works. From core musical concepts, generate parts based on ensemble size and registers. Example: ad;sr
- Topographic scores. Microcosms of sound, possibly based on data from the performers’ location. Reveal score over time or by position (“fog of war”).
- Music formatted as a storyboard. Present a musical “scene” while previewing the next, cueing and transitioning between scenes using animation.
- Open form/mobile movements, generated in realtime.
- Decision Tree. At each section, performers are given a choice between two cells of music. Decisions shape the direction of the work over time.
- Morphing clouds of sound, smoothly transitioning between material.
- Clustering and group dynamics. Control orchestration through use of motion in score.
- Interpreting 3D graphic scores. Musicians sit around a phantom central object, parts are generated based on their position.
- Textural Messages. Call and response between ensembles performing graphic/textural/musical content, generated in realtime.
- More to be developed as project takes shape.
vectorscores is supported by the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture.
The vectorscores framework is released under the MIT License. Copyright of compositions resulting from code and parameters using the framework belong to the composer.
- Performances. Perform works created with vectorscores. Contact me and I’ll list performances here along with links to any audio and video documentation.
- Compositions. Use the vectorscores framework to compose your own score. You are welcome to use my work a starting point—but please make them your own!
- Repository. I encourage feedback and contributions to this project. Feel free to submit issues and pull requests!
The current scope of this project is to require as few dependencies as possible for ease of performances and contribution.
Public access to works
- viewing and contribution via GitHub
- download generated vector files and pdfs of scores
- download pre-selected vector files and pdfs of scores
- clone or download repository to run on local machine or WLAN
- documentation of premiere performances and other performances as available