Posts Tagged ‘Christopher Chong’

RCM Laptop Orchestra

This year is my 2nd and final year of the MMus in Composition & Composition for Screen at the Royal College of Music.  I’ve recently set up a group for the purposes of teaching and encouraging improvisation through experimentation and interactive graphic scores for performance on Laptop.  The RCM Laptop Orchestra has now had two meetings, 1 rehearsal and is off to a great start!  Keep up with our progress here at



Silent Disco – For Ossian Ensemble

What is it that I find so satisfying about scores that have disappearing staves?  Admittedly i never write scores like this, but on this occasion i’m going to make an exception.  In true Christopher Chong style, this score has absolutely nothing to do with the piece in that it merely shows the performers a notated example of what to expect sonically…

Clip of Silent Disco

Clip of Silent Disco

The piece actually features most of the musical instructions being transmitted through headphones attached to an iPod touch receiving audio wirelessly using Max/MSP and aka.speech, and Airfoil.  The piece form part of a suite comprising a sort of twisted carnival of the animals.  Unsurprisingly, i’ve been given the ‘lab rat’, hehe.  Expect shouting, screaming and plenty of other LOUD NOISES.

The Ossian Ensemble

The Ossian Ensemble

Gig is July 8th, 2009 at the Royal College of Music. The Ossian ensemble is currently resident at the RCM as Junior Fellows.  For more details check out the news posts at

Final Fantasy VII [Videogame Music dissertation]

It’s been a couple years now, but this is a copy of my dissertation entitled ‘The Narrative Role of Music in Role-playing Games: Final Fantasy VII’.  I know there’s more FFVII fans out there than there are of any other final fantasy game so I figured I ought to release this online for people to read.  It’s a gaming theory based analysis of story-telling in videogame contexts.

Final Fantasy VII

The Narrative Role of Music in Role-playing Games: Final Fantasy VII

Dissertation: The Narrative Role of Music in Role-playing Games: Final Fantasy VII [pdf]

Research Project: God Mode: Playing the Ultimate Killer [Music and the portrayal of Violence in Videogames] [pdf]

Musical written for Martin Bolton – now on dvd

How exciting is this?  Mr. Bolton has finally burned the DVD of the now-titled ‘Death in D Minor’ co-written by myself and a colleague, Johnny Stormonth-Darling.  When Martin approached us about the project asking us to write a musical in 3 weeks I have to admit, i told him it was impossible!  But 3 weeks later Johnny and I had 10 songs together and all the lyrics and hey presto a couple months later this fine product arrived on my doorstep!



According to the front cover, music has ‘never been to terrifying’ haha!  But seriously, I had almost no contact with this after writing the music until the dvd arrived yesterday and I have to say its extremely close to what I’d imagined and the choreography and cinematography are genuinely laugh out loud.

So here’s you Mr. Bolton and your cast of confuzzled murderers and hitch hikers!

If the dvd is distributed after the premiere I will let you know, just email me same place as usual –


Puppet Whispers – Communal Areas

Ok, so I haven’t got a lot of time to really explain this one as I’m currently fixing it for rehearsals coming up but this is a sneak peek at the latest version of what has come to be known as ‘Communal Areas’.  This pieces is composed in real-time but performance is controlled by an ‘active time bar’ which moves left and right according to the position of the musician to your right.  If this movement is proving too erratic for your poor classical mind, you may stomp ur foot to ‘pause’ the active time bar for a maximum of 4 seconds.

Graphic real-time notation

Communal Areas: Graphic real-time notation

The Bag which appear to be full of little balls gets heavier throughout the performance whenever a musician requires the ‘pause’ facility.  Dynamics of notes played during the piece should comply with the position of the bag of the ‘dynamic gradient’ which forms the main method of structuring material during the piece.  Pitch content is the most improvisatory whilst dynamics are the most static.  Performers may choose to never stomp their feet, but then the piece would never end, and that wouldn’t be very musical now would it?

The system being used for the composition of pitch streams will be facilitated by a fader fox micromodul LC2 (kindly provided by Chris McClelland).  The system allows me to use the fingers of one hand to control the pitch values whilst my other hand is free to press any of 4 buttons which input the notes into the real-time stream.

real-time pitch stream input using a faderfox LC2

real-time pitch stream input using a faderfox LC2

We’ll see how well it works!

Tantrum – Puppet Whispers

Here’s the latest version of ‘Tantrum’.  The piece features a musical ‘toy’ which up to 3 performers are allowed to manipulate at any one time.  The 4th musician is granted permission to play with the toy by having a ‘tantrum’ and stomping their feet.  This in turn knocks out one of the original 3 performers.

Puppet Whispers – Progress report summary

For anyone interested in the project I’ve uploaded my progress report which i had to hand in today.  It gives a fairly brief summary of the project and what you can expect at the concert on Sept 8th/9th 2008 at SARC in Belfast.