Samuel Hollywood-Summers

In parallel to SWCTN’s Automation Fellowship programme Kaleider offered four Devon based individuals Research & Development bursaries. These bursaries are for new automative ideas or experiences that utilise Creative Technology.

Each recipient received up to a £2,000 bursary, residence at Kaleider Studios for the duration of the R&D, and mentoring in idea development, producing, funding and creative technology to support the future of their ideas.

Samuel Hollywood-Summers is a sound designer, composer and filmmaker with a specific interest in generative music. This approach to music creation involves the composer giving up some aspect of their compositional process to an agent other than themselves. The topic is explored in his master’s thesis and accompanying documentary film, completed during his studies at Glasgow School of Art in 2016/17.

At Kaleider, Sam worked on ‘Emotional Response’, a piece of interactive generative music that seeks to respond to the emotions of the audience, as interpreted by facial recognition software. The aims of this project are to involve the audience in ‘composerly’ decision making, being active participants in the creation of the music. The goal here is to democratise music creation, widening participation beyond those with formal musical training. The performance of the piece will also remove the skill and virtuosity we usually demand of musicians, with the music being performed through emotional expression only, with automated processes within a computer program taking care of the rest. One of his intentions here is to bridge the gap between the role of producer and consumer of music, since so many people are reluctant to consider themselves as musical, leaving music creation to those qualified with expertise and authority. The idea of emotional expression and expressivity being central to a piece of music realised by a computer program is also interesting to him.

In addition to his work as a Kaleider resident, Sam works on music and post-production sound for films and games as a freelancer, and makes his own films.