Hoboken, N.J. – The College of Arts & Letters at Stevens officially opened the Sound Synthesis Research Center (SSRC) this month, enabling students and faculty to engage in groundbreaking sound research and development, as well as creative and artistic expression and performance of electronic music, in a dedicated lab space with state-of-the-art equipment.
“The SSRC is a place to study, explore and develop electronic music through the lens of science and technology,” said Carlos Alomar, Distinguished Artist-in-Residence and Director of the SSRC. “Access to the advanced equipment and instruments in the SSRC serve to advance technical innovation in music and prepare Stevens students for the demands of the contemporary music industry.”
Located in the Morton building, the SSRC is a budding sound engineer, audio producer or musician’s dream. It is home to an extensive array of electronic music instruments and tools, computer systems, and audio processing and engineering equipment – from synthesizers to electronic drums to vocalist technology to iPad pedalboards to guitar MIDI controllers and more. Companies like Panasonic, 3DStereoLab and Keith McMillen Instruments have supported the SSRC with their equipment.
In conjunction with Stevens’ Music & Technology program, which was ranked as the second most innovative college music program in the nation, the SSRC will provide a number of unique opportunities to the Stevens community.
The SSRC will become an integral part of the Music & Technology program’s curriculum and research. Assistant Professor of Music & Technology Ricky Graham, for example, teaches courses on electronic music, and his students will use the SSRC to experiment with the concepts learned in class.
Music residencies will also allow renowned visiting artists access to the SSRC’s resources in return for educational guest lectures, presentations and performances. Stevens faculty benefit, too – like Graham, an award-winning musician and producer who has performed worldwide, who will use it for his ongoing research on the development of interactive music hardware and software, performance and composition models and methods, and perceptual studies.
In addition, the SSRC will serve as a rehearsal space for some of Stevens’ unique student musical ensembles, such as the Mini-Midi-Magic Orchestra, a guitar synth ensemble that replicates organic instruments and exotic sounds, or the A.C.E., an alternative control ensemble in which students create and perform with their own controllers.
Led by Alomar, the SSRC has the support and direction of one of the music industry’s stars. In his illustrious 30-year career, Alomar has worked as David Bowie’s guitarist, co-writer and musical director, and produced or performed with legends like Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Mariah Carey, Tina Turner and Cindy Lauper. He is the recipient of 32 Gold or Platinum records.
About Stevens Institute of Technology
Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University®, is a premier, private research university situated in Hoboken, N.J. overlooking the Manhattan skyline. Founded in 1870, technological innovation has been the hallmark and legacy of Stevens’ education and research programs for more than 140 years. Within the university’s three schools and one college, more than 6,100 undergraduate and graduate students collaborate with more than 350 faculty members in an interdisciplinary, student-centric, entrepreneurial environment to advance the frontiers of science and leverage technology to confront global challenges. Stevens is home to three national research centers of excellence, as well as joint research programs focused on critical industries such as healthcare, energy, finance, defense and STEM education. The university is the fastest-rising college in the U.S. News & World Report ranking of the best national universities, and it is consistently ranked among the nation’s elite for return on investment for students, career services programs, and mid-career salaries of alumni. Stevens is in the midst of a 10-year strategic plan, The Future. Ours to Create., designed to further extend the Stevens legacy to create a forward-looking and far-reaching institution with global impact.