Video: The new format of the Festival of Improvised Music Projects focuses on the recording process

Arts and shows | Education | Learning | UW Notebook | Video

June 15, 2022

For five days in April, jazz music echoed through the Meany Hall Studio Theatre.

But the sounds of the collaboration didn’t stop there.

Between games, students and faculty participated in listening sessions and conversations about the recording process. This was the format this year Festival of Improvised Music Projectshosted annually by the University of Washington School of Music.

Music student Beau Wood listens to a recording.

Typically, the project uses guest artists to work with students and organize public performances. This year the event had a different focus as a sound engineer david butcher provided students with an in-depth experience focused on the performance and engineering aspects of recording. The new format allowed students and faculty to gain experience with UW’s new mobile check-in system. While teaching fundamental recording and audio skills, Boucher also worked with students and faculty to document new work and experiment with techniques.

“You become a better musician by becoming a better sound engineer,” Boucher said, “and vice versa.”

Boucher has credits as an engineer, mixer and producer. He has worked with a variety of pop and rock musicians including Andrew Bird, Madison Cunningham and Rufus Wainwright. He also worked on movie soundtracks, earning engineering credits on “Frozen” and “Encanto,” among others.

Ted Poor, an associate professor of jazz studies, is the pedagogical advisor for the improvised music project. The program, which will return to its original format in 2023, is open to all students and faculty members of the School of Music.

“Recording is about our ability to listen deeply and listen to higher levels of detail and respect that detail,” Poor said. “You get that other perspective that you can’t naturally have when playing alone.”

For more information, contact Poor at [email protected].

Associate music teacher Ted Poor (left) invited his friend David Boucher to conduct an intensive music recording for UW Jazz students.

Tag(s): Improvised Music Project • School of Music • Ted Poor

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