by Tricia Duke '19
A $9,480 Hummel Foundation grant awarded to the Knox College Music Department will soon provide student composers with access to a student digital technology workstation.
The workstation will include "a top-of-the line computer, hardware necessary for the playback and editing of music and sound, and the most current and cutting-edge software programs in the fields of composition and sound editing," according to Associate Professor and Chair of Music Nikki Malley.
Joan Huguet, Assistant Professor of Music and lead writer for the grant proposal, said that of all the projects the music department considered while applying for the grant, computer composition topped the list.
"Basically all the music that we consume on a day-to-day basis uses this technology, for sound manipulation, editing, even its very creation," Huguet said. "We wanted to give our students the opportunity to develop their skills in this because it's a flourishing area, and a very marketable skill for them after they graduate."
The final decisions regarding the software and installation of the workstation will be determined with the input of a soon-to-be-hired assistant professor of music composition.
"We knew going into this that we were going to be hiring a new composer who will start Fall 2018," Huguet said. The department aims to have the new instructor teaching music technology classes within the next year.
Based on the student excitement Huguet has seen so far, she expects that the workstation will gather even larger amounts of student interest as the program develops.
"We're planning to have the lab be very much open to students. This isn't going to live in some professor's office where students can never use it," she said.
Huguet said she was glad to have been a part of providing this new resource to inspire and enable other artists' creative process.
"The beautiful thing about technology is that it evolves constantly, so [students] are going to think of new ways to use it that I never would've even dreamed of," she said.