SAM Seminar: Tele-Improvisation: Intercultural Interaction in the Online Global Music Jam Session

Roger Mills (UTS) chaired by Adam Hulbert (UNSW) 

This presentation describes case study research of how geographically dispersed musicians and sonic artists interact in real-time, telematic improvisation, and the strategies they develop to perform across global cultures and time-zones. It includes audio-visual recordings of online jam sessions, as well as a multimodal analysis of music, sound, gestures, and performers verbalised reflections. The presentation considers the unique musical and phenomenological characteristics of telematic music-making, and how musicians of different cultures negotiate the unknown in first online encounters. It also describes the use of metaphor and schematic bodily experience to enable an in-depth understanding of online performers’ interactive approaches and strategic thought processes. The work draws on the findings in Roger’s new book Tele-Improvisation: Intercultural Interaction in the Online Global Music Jam Session published by Springer-Nature. He will also discuss the making of Oceans between Sound, a new album by the Ethernet Orchestra of which he is the musical director.


Dr. Roger Mills is a musician, sound artist, and writer whose practice and research focuses on networked music performance, improvisation, sound and music composition, and radio. Credits include sound design for the multiscreen cinema film Hindsight (Ignition Films, UK), the score for BAFTA award-winning dance theatre performance At Swim Two Boys (Earthfall, UK), and a Golden Eye Award for his multi-stream radio performance Idea of South (AU). Roger works with the tranSTURM artist collective, for which he designed the sound score for the LICHT_redux installation (Sydney Fringe 2019), as well as multi-channel sound for a new stereoscopic animation, Aquatic Species by Holger Deuter, at the UTS Data Arena. Roger is also the musical director of the internationally acclaimed Ethernet Orchestra, an Internet music ensemble exploring new approaches to intercultural telematic improvisation. The ensemble informs his research at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) where he researches collaborative interaction in networked and digitally mediated environments.


No need to book, all welcome!


Image courtesy of Alexandra Rode

This series provides a showcase and forum for local as well as international scholars, researchers, industry practitioners and creative artists – ranging from early-career to well-established – to present on their work. No need to book, all welcome!

Find out more and see the full program.

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