New Jersey Youth Symphony showcases experimental technology at May 15 online concert


(NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ)the New Jersey Youth Symphony (NJYS), a program of Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts, will broadcast live a free concert from the College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown on Saturday, May 15 at 7:00 p.m. on With the NJYS Youth Symphony directed by Artistic Director and Conductor Helen H. Cha-Pyo and with support from the League of American Orchestras Future Fund, NJYS will partner with Nokia Bell Labs to experiment with communication bidirectional during the concert. C4C, a technology that turns audience members’ phones into loudspeakers, will allow spectators to participate in the performance.

According to Cha-Pyo, “It was an invigorating journey, starting with the conception of this experimental project and culminating with the actual performances of new compositions using C4C technology. Working with our extremely talented team of young creative musicians, composers and technologists has confirmed the importance of interdisciplinary art and technology collaborations as a means for live concerts to increase their relevance in the 21st century.

Developed by the Nokia Experiments in Art and Technology (EAT) laboratory, C4C allows performers to feel the audience’s response in real time and activate the sounds of the entire audience in sync with the main performance. The solution presents a new form of sound immersion that allows for a deeper connection between the audience and the performers. EAT is a pioneering initiative that brings together the worlds of engineering, science and the arts to humanize technology.

EAT Director Domhnaill Hernon said: “Working with the students of the New Jersey Youth Symphony has been inspiring. In particular, seeing our emerging technology being used to show their creativity and to enable a deeper connection between people gives me great hope for the future of humanity.

A team of carefully selected students worked directly with EAT creative technologists Danielle McPhatter and Ethan Edwards to help implement the new technology during rehearsals. Trombonist Jimmy Chen, a senior at Bridgewater-Raritan High School; percussionist Abhinav Datla, a senior at Sayreville War Memorial High School; violinist Samantha Liu, a junior from Ridge High School; jazz bassist Ryoma Takenaga, a junior at the Academy of Information Technology; bassoonist Samhita Tatavarty, a junior at Ridge High School; and violinist Brian Zhang, senior at the Academy of Mathematics, Science and Engineering, had the opportunity to combine their passions for technology, innovation and music in weekly sessions with the researchers.

McPhatter said: “The students worked together to cross uncharted waters at the intersection of music, art and technology. Using their interdisciplinary skills, they set out to solve ambitious challenges to create an immersive multimedia performance to connect artists and audience members in new ways.

“Working with the Nokia Bell Labs EAT team has been an incredible experience,” said Datla. “As a group, we were able to bring together our individual skills and creativity to develop some truly unique end projects.”

“This project has been great to work on!” said Tatavarty. “Art and technology are generally considered to be opposite sides of the spectrum in everyday life, so being able to push those boundaries by working with other students on something like technology-augmented performance, especially with a traditional orchestra at your fingertips, was a revealing and inspiring experience. I’m so happy to have been able to be a part of this initiative, and it’s amazing to see these two worlds merging to create an enhanced concert experience for everyone involved!

Said Takenaga, “Participating in the Nokia Bell Labs project has been a very enriching experience for me as I have been able to work with composers and researchers in the fields of music and technology, and collaborate with other young musicians. who share my passion for the integration of technology and art. The fruit of this project is an innovative and interesting event!

As part of the Futures Fund’s partnership with Nokia Bell Labs, NJYS has commissioned two composers, Patricio Molina and Mesia Austin, to write works for COVID-compliant small ensembles that will be premiered during the May 15 concert.

Molina said: “I am very inspired and very honored to have such a fantastic group of young musicians performing my music. My thanks to Helen Cha-Pyo, students at NJYS and researchers at Nokia for donating 150% to make great music during a pandemic. It has been an inspiring experience.

In addition to Tribute to Kahlil Gibran and Tribute to Nicarno Parra by Molina and Spiral by Austin, the concert will feature works by Gabrieli, Bach, Beethoven and Karel Husa. For more information about the live concert, visit

The New Jersey Youth Symphony, founded in 1979, is a multi-level orchestral program providing ensemble training to students in grades 3-12 in New Jersey. NJYS has grown from an orchestra of 65 students to over 500 students in 15 different orchestras and ensembles, including the internationally renowned Youth Symphony. NJYS ensembles have performed in venues such as the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Carnegie Hall, and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. NJYS has received numerous prestigious awards for its adventurous programming from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) and has had six European tours, including participation in the Summa Cum Laude International Youth Festival and Competition (Vienna), winning first prizes in July 2014 and 2017.

Now in its 42nd season, NJYS continues to achieve musical excellence through intensive instruction and high-level performance. Under the guidance of a talented team of conductors, coaches and teaching artists, students are immersed in a stimulating repertoire, learn the art of ensemble playing, and explore their potential in a supportive and supportive environment. inclusive. NJYS remains committed to programming works by various composers and regularly features 20th century African American and female composers such as Duke Ellington, George Walker, Yvonne Desportes, Emma Lou Diemer, Julia Perry and Florence Price.

The New Jersey Youth Symphony is a program of the Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts. Wharton is New Jersey’s largest nonprofit performing arts education organization, serving more than 1,200 students of all ages and abilities across a range of classes and ensembles. In addition to the New Jersey Youth Symphony, programs include the Paterson Music Project and the Performing Arts School.

originally published: 05/10/2021

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