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Looping (what else!) questions..Human Prepared Piano!
I'm currently working on a piece that I hope to have performed at a student composition concert at my University-
It is completely through composed (I have having another student perform it) and the basic gist of it, is the performer creates music with the piano in every way but the conventional one (simply pressing the keys!). If there wasn't looping I probably wouldn't be posting this :) so of course, throughout the whole process a laptop is looping every four measures or so, creating some very neat soundscapes as well as some neat moments as things drop out and are added.
Now I've got a lot of it figured out-
The different sounds as well as the structure and composition of the piece (I'd hope so!),
the looping (ableton live is doing the looping, an envelope track sends out "commands" to Bome's midi translator, which sends instructions back to Live....this way the performer doesn't need to worry about a footswitch or making the looping happen. She has enough to worry about already!),
So what I'm getting stuck on is input/output! In terms of speakers, I think the school can provide some sort of PA system I can plug my m-audio fasttrack pro into, but if not I have M-Audio BX5a studio monitors which get loud enough I think, so I don't think that will be a problem.
As for the microphone situation, I'm running into two problems. First I don't know which to use. I currently have access to an AKG Perception 100 Large Diaphragm Condenser Microphone, a Shure SM57 Dynamic (instrument?) mic and a shure SM58 vocal mic. I'm going to assume now the vocal mic isn't going to work as its got a pretty specific purpose, but I haven't had a real chance to test out the Condenser and the Dynamic mic. (I think the Condenser is more for recording- not sure its going to be able to pick up enough? Maybe I'm wrong though.). This is going to be played on a Grand Piano, and its very important that the mic pick up all the sound coming from that area- one of the important parts of the sound is the overtones/sympathetic vibrations which are generated when a key is struck that is muted by a finger (the sustain pedal is of course down, so the strings ring out while the one that is struck becomes silent.) So its very important to get that sound as clear as possible (its not very loud, but it is audible and complex). So what would you suggest? I don't mind spending 100-200 on a mic if it can be used for this purpose as thats a good investment!
The other problem is I'm worried that the mic will pick up the looped sound that is being played through the speakers/monitors. What do people normally do to counter that? I feel that since the speakers will be in front of the piano facing outward towards the audience the mic will not pick it up so much, but does anyone know if this will be a huge issue? If so how might I fix it...
Thank you all SO much. I've had this piece bouncing around in my head FOREVER now and I'm hopefully finally getting it realized the way I like. Just gotta overcome a few more obstacles...!