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Nicolas Collins

Workshop and presentation
Mon 8.3. - 19:00

Nicolas Collins presents a hands-on workshop in Hardware Hacking. Assuming no technical background whatsoever, such workshops guide the participants through a series of sound-producing electronic construction projects, from making simple contact microphones, through "bending" toys", to making oscillators and other circuits from scratchStudents will build alternative microphones for recording and performance (contact mikes, coil pickups, etc.), and transform radios and loudspeakers into touch-sensitive synthesizers. No electronic experience required.

Participants should bring the following supplies:

A portable, battery-powered radio or boombox, with appropriate batteries. Make sure it works! It should be cheap enough that you won’t be too angry if it never works again. The AM band is more important than FM, but it doesn’t matter if the radio picks up both. It should have analog tuning (i.e., a dial) rather than digital presets or scan buttons. Larger radios are easier to work with than tiny ones, and older ones always sound better than new ones. It should have a built-in speaker, not just a headphone jack. And most importantly: IT MUST BE BATTERY POWERED! Beware: an alarm clock radio with a built-in “backup battery” is not suitable, since it requires AC power to function as a radio. One or more raw loudspeakers of any size (just the speaker, not enclosed in a cabinet/box). Three nine-volt batteries. A small piece of corroded or rough-surfaced scrap metal. A soldering iron (lightweight, fine point). Hand tools (diagonal cutters, wire strippers, a knife, etc.). Optional: an expendable cassette player of some sort (Walkman, boombox, etc.)

Bio: New York born and raised, Nicolas Collins studied composition with Alvin Lucier at Wesleyan University, worked for many years with David Tudor, and has collaborated with numerous soloist and ensembles around the world. He lived most of the 1990s in Europe, where he was Visiting Artistic Director of Stichting STEIM (Amsterdam), and a DAAD composer-in-residence in Berlin. Since 1997 he has been editor-in-chief of the Leonardo Music Journal, and since 1999 a Professor in the Department of Sound at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The second edition of his book, Handmade Electronic Music – The Art of Hardware Hacking, was published by Routledge in 2009. Collins has the dubious distinction of having played at both CBGBs and the Concertgebouw

Workshop is mainly for FAMU students, but is open as well for public.

to sign in necessary, please send email to milos@skolska28.cz


nic collins

About the Artist 


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