Category Archives: MA/MSc Seminars

Seminar | International Film Composer Patrick Cassidy

Patrick Cassidy

Thursday April 27th 1.30pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

The CSIS Department at the University of Limerick is delighted to welcome one of our most distinguished alumni back to the campus on Thursday, 28 April.

International Composer, Patrick Cassidy will deliver a special seminar on the theme of “Music Composition For Film”.

Patrick Cassidy was first honoured by the University of Limerick in 2007 when he received a UL Alumni Award for his contribution to Arts & Culture. Patrick graduated from UL with a BSc in Applied Mathematics in 1985 and left Ireland in 1999 to pursue his music career in Los Angeles. In 2015, he was honoured at the inaugural Richard Harris International Film Festival, held in Limerick, with the Outstanding Talent Award. The award-winning Composer is increasingly spending time in Ireland and among his recent works was the score for RTE’s ‘1916 The Irish Rebellion’ and the much-lauded ‘Mise Eire’, a hauntingly beautiful and moving arrangement of Pearse’s poem. Later this month, Patrick will be a key contributor to the GAA’s ‘Laochra’ spectacle at Croke Park to commemorate the centenary of the 1916 Rising. This is the first time Patrick has returned to the campus to share his experiences and he will be a guest of the CSIS Department and the UL Alumni Association.

The Seminar will take place from 1.30pm to 3pm on Thursday, 28 April in Room CSG-01, CSIS Building, University of Limerick.

*** Booking is essential so – please register here

Seminar: Alex Wilson

Wednesday February 17th 3.00pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

Alex Wilson is currently a PhD student at the University of Salford’s Acoustics Research Centre, investigating the perception of quality in sound recordings, focussing on the production of popular music. This research focuses on the mechanics and psychoacoustics of audio engineering, specifically the task of mix-engineering, addressing three fundamental questions:

· What does mix-engineering involve?
· What makes a good mix?
· How can good mixes be generated automatically?

He obtained a B.Sc in Experimental Physics from NUI Maynooth in 2008 and a B.Eng in Audio Technology from University of Salford in 2013. During this time, twelve months were spent as an R&D engineer at Sennheiser GmbH, in Hannover, Germany, and, more recently, six months as a visiting researcher at the Centre for Digital Music at Queen Mary University of London. He maintains interests in digital audio processing, psychoacoustics and the art of record production.

To further the development of intelligent music production tools, towards generating mixes that would realistically be created by a human mix-engineer, and enjoyed by a listener, it is important to understand what kind of mixes are typically created by human mix-engineers. What can be achieved by mixing? How different can mixes be from one another? How much do different mix-engineers differ from one another?

1501 audio samples were gathered, representing the alternate mixes of 10 songs. We have investigated the distribution of low level audio signal features, over mixes of each song and the entire dataset. Quantitative analysis reveals that mix-engineers mostly vary the perceived “loudness”, “brightness” and “width” of the mix. Typical ranges for these dimensions have been determined. By plotting the full set of mixes in a low-dimensional space, it is observed that it is possible to mix any of the songs considered to have the general loudness/brightness/width characteristics of another.

This novel research can impact a number of theoretical and practical problems. In addition to intelligent audio production, the work has implications for audio education and for the field of music information retrieval, towards improved algorithms for tasks such as tempo estimation, artist identification and genre classification.

Seminar: Ed Devane

Wednesday September 23rd 3.00pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

Ed Devane is a sound artist currently based in Limerick. Ed’s work covers a variety of activities including electronic music production, free improvisation, musical instrument design, audio-visual installation, educational workshops and video art. A resolutely experimental approach underpins all of Devane’s creative endeavours.

Ed will present a selection of his recent music and installations and give a demonstration of his percussion sound design processes using effect feedback and sampling in Ableton Live.

Seminar: Hilmar Thordarson

Tuesday March 24th

Time: 14.00

Venue: CS2-045 (Computer Science and Information Systems)

Hilmar Thordarson was born in Akureyri Iceland in 1960. After graduating from The Reykjavik College of Music in Theory and Music Composition he went to USA for further studies. He holds a MFA in Composition from California Institute of the Arts and MA from Yale School of Music. During the years of 1992-1995 Mr. Thordarson worked as a composer in residence at Center for New Music and Audio Technology (CNMAT) in Berkeley California. During that time he had a unique opportunity to work some experiment with music and computer technology. The outcome from that was the multimedia work “Goblins from the Land of Ice” a collaboration of computer aided music, Japanese Butoh dance and video work using interactive technology. In his own compositions he is often inspired by the experienced environment. Like the piano solo “Oh Yellow Wonderworld”, from his California year’s, or the chamber work “Three Places in Japan”, an afterthought after his first visit to Japan. This is even more clear in his computer music works like “Goblins from the Land of Ice” and “Dark Forces” where he basically uses the sounds from Iceland’s nature as compositional material.

Joe Chester

Seminar: Joe Chester

Wednesday November 19th 2.00pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

Joe Chester cut his teeth recording to 2-inch tape in Dublin’s legendary Sun Studios in the mid to late 1990’s and was responsible for many of the key recordings of Dublin’s then thriving underground alternative rock scene. Many of these recordings by bands like Sunbear, Sack, Future Kings of Spain and Nina Hynes have since attained something of a cult status.
In this seminar Joe will talk about his work as a music producer, engineer and artist in Ireland. The format will follow an informal conversational approach allowing audience interaction throughout.

Joe Chester
Joe Chester cut his teeth recording to 2-inch tape in Dublin’s legendary Sun Studios in the mid to late 1990’s and was responsible for many of the key recordings of Dublin’s then thriving underground alternative rock scene. Many of these recordings by bands like Sunbear, Sack, Future Kings of Spain and Nina Hynes have since attained something of a cult status. However, always more than an engineer/producer, Joe also played guitar and keyboards and sang on his sessions and eventually embarked on a parallel career as a member of much-loved Irish group tenspeedracer, touring worldwide and producing their recordings at Jerry Boys’ Livingston Studios in London and at Chapel Studios, Lincolnshire, latterly in conjunction with UK producer, Darren Allison (who worked on My Bloody Valentines’s Loveless and Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space by Spiritualised, two of Joe’s all-time favourite albums).
Upon leaving the band in 2004, Joe launched a solo career, releasing four highly acclaimed solo albums to date. All the while, Joe continued to produce records for other artists, honing his own very particular sound and approach in the studio, combining an old school organic sensibility with an ear for pop melodies and harmony that is second to none, building up a client list that is a veritable who’s who of Ireland’s rock and pop scene, including Gemma Hayes, Mundy, and Shane McGowan. His signature sound has been generating more and more demand lately, Joe’s recordings achieving multi platinum status with The Coronas (Heroes or Ghosts) , recently hitting the number 1 spot in Germany and earning platinum status with Ryan Sheridan (The Day You Live Forever) and steering folk legend Finbar Furey to his first Number 1 since 1987 (The Last Great Love Song).

tonyHill Water Work

Seminar: Tony Hill

Wednesday October 22nd 2.00pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

Born in London in 1946, Tony Hill studied Architecture and Sculpture and makes experimental short films that are somewhere between sculpture and cinema. In this seminar, Tony will explore the philosophy behind expanded cinema, the personal motivations that drive his practice, and some of the novel techniques that feature throughout his film and video practice. He will introduce and screen some of his seminal short film & video pieces and also perform one of his live light pieces.


Tony Hill
Born in London in 1946, Tony Hill studied Architecture and Sculpture and makes experimental short films that are somewhere between sculpture and cinema. He has been working as an independent film-maker since 1973, usually taking on all aspects of production and often developing and building his own equipment. He also works with installations, photography, sculpture and sound.

He has presented his work at many Art Galleries and in Film Festivals worldwide. His films have been broadcast on network television in many countries and have won several awards. They have been published in the UK and Japan. His commercial work includes directing music videos and TV commercials.

He taught film and video from 1982 until 2002 at the University of Derby becoming Professor of Film, taught film-making at Plymouth College of Art from 2004 until 2011 and is currently an associate lecturer at the University of Plymouth.

Floor Film 16mm, installation, 30 mins repeat, 1975, Shown at Centre Georges Pompidou
To See 16mm, 2 screen, 15 mins, 1982
Downside Up 16mm, 17 mins, 1985, Best Experimental Film, Melbourne Film Festival
Water Work 16mm, 11 mins, 1987, Best Experimental Film, Melbourne Film Festival
Expanded Movie 16mm, 12 mins, 1990
Striking Images 16mm, 1 min, 1990
A Short History of the Wheel 16mm, 1 min, 1992, Deutscher Videokunstpreis 1993
Holding the Viewer 16mm, 1 min, 1993, Public Prize, Chateauroux Film Festival
Laws of Nature 35mm, 25 mins, 1997, Silver Plaque for Experimental Film, Chicago Film Festival
Camera Obscura 35mm, 16 mins, 2000
Geometry and Gravity 35mm, 3 mins, 2001
The Pool 16mm film/video installation, 2003
A Sense of Place Audio, 5 mins, 2003
Farm Film Video, 41 mins, 2004
Greenwell Barn Video, 7 mins, 2004
Laban Manoeuvres Video, 10 mins, 2006
North Cross Video, 5 mins, 2008
The Doors Multiprojection video installation, 10 min repeat, 2010
BIKE HD Video, 1 min, 2013
SEA HD Video, 1 min, 2013


Seminar: Gianfranco Ceccolini & Harry van Haaren present The Mod Pedal

Wednesday October 15th 2.00pm
Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

The Mod Pedal is a linux based guitar effects board. It supports hundreds of effects in a small rugged stompbox and allows users to install new pedals and to share pedalboards online. MOD users have access to a social network for sharing pedalboards. In addition to installing other users’ pedalboards, users can record 15-second sound samples and share them on Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo.
Gianfranco and Harry will discuss the development of the Mod pedal and their wider interest in music and open source programming.

Following the seminar there will be a workshop where participants will have an opportunity to try out the MOD pedal and speak to the developers. Take your favorite guitar, plectrum or pick along, and try it for yourself!

Gianfranco Ceccolini turned the MOD into a union of his two passions: music and technology. He got his first guitar and his first computer in 1990 and has been thinking of a way to combine the two ever since. A free software enthusiast, Gianfranco got a degree in mechanical engineering from the Polytechnic College of the University of São Paulo in 2003, worked in serveradministration and computer networks, lived in London, played in variousbands, spent some time at Petrobras and even set up an events space. In 2010, he decided to take his life in a different direction, left his job at the major state company (Petrobras) and decided to focus entirely on developing the MOD. He is a devoted Frank Zappa fan!

Harry van Haaren is a musician turned C++ coder. After finishing the Music Media Performance Technology degree from UL, he went on to found OpenAV productions and is the author of various softsynths and effect plugins. His focus is currently on the workflow of live-looping, and creating software tools to improve the impact and dynamics of a solo performance.


Seminar: Ed Devane

Wednesday October 8th, 2014
2.00pm Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

Ed Devane is a musician, instrument builder, workshop facilitator and creative strategist. Getting into music production and DIY instrument building as a teenager, Ed has released records on various electro, techno and electronical labels under his own name and as Withering Zithering. In recent years his creative work has expanded from music production to include audio visual installations, community music projects, education and custom instrument building.

The talk will be a tour of Devane’s major projects to date, with insights into the thought processes and technical challenges behind the work, and lessons learned from his experiences. This talk will be of interest to other artists and students working in cross-disciplinary fields.

Further details can be found on Ed’s webpage

Seminar | Caoimhe Doyle & Jean McGrath 20th November

Wednesday November 20th, 2013

3.00pm Computer Science Auditorium (CSG-01)

This seminar is a real demonstration and explanation of how cinematic and game sound effects are made. We get a brief and engaging sweep through the history of Foley, highlighting some of the best examples. We get a full demonstration of a live Foley session, where the soundtrack is built, action by action and layer by layer, finishing with a screening of the final result. There may be opportunities for participants to contribute to the soundtrack!

The seminar is essential for all students in Music Technology, Interactive Media, Digital Media Design, Music Media and Performance Technology and Computer Games Development. Others are, of course, welcome, subject to available seats.

Caoimhe Doyle is an internationally renowned Foley artist. She joined Ardmore Sound in 1997 and continues to work at home and abroad and has been a Foley artist on a variety of Hollywood movies including Knocked Up, Eastern Promises and The Men Who Stare at Goats. In 2011 Caoimhe was nominated for an EMMY Award for Best Sound Effects & Foley, and won an MPSE Golden Reel Award, for her Foley work on Games of Thrones Series 1.

Jean McGrath is an award winning Foley and ADR mixer. She has mixed Foley and ADR on many feature films and TV productions, her most recent credits include Peter Jackson’s The Lovely Bones and The Hobbit, Rodrigo Garcia’s Albert Nobbs and HBO’s Game of Thrones Series 1. Jean was nominated with the rest of the sound crew for an EMMY, and won an MPSE Award, for Best Sound Effects for Games of Thrones Series 1.

DAWN: Concert & Exhibition

Exhibition Opening: 6pm, Tuesday 3rd September, Computer Science Building.

Concert: 7pm, Tuesday 3rd September, Irish Chamber Orchestra Building.

Admission Free.

Exhibition Continues: 4th and 5th September, 11am to 5pm.

Locations: See campus map

The annual DAWN exhibition and concert showcase new works developed by students on the masters’ programmes in Interactive Media and Music Technology at the University of Limerick. The focus on the creative application of digital technology across a diversity of topics, which both these programmes explore, is reflected in the range of projects that make up this year’s exhibition.


Further Information: