Thursday 4 April 2019 // 15:00-16:00 // The Portal, Department of Musicology (ZEB building), Sem Sælands vei 2, 0371 Oslo // 2nd Floor (The Portal), Fjordgata 1, 7010 Trondheim

This talk is organized by the Master's Music, Communication and Technology (UiO/NTNU) in collaboration with WoNoMute and facilitated by Tone Åse. There will be no video streaming of this talk.
Pamela Z
Pamela Z. Photo: Donald Swearingen.


Pamela Z’s performances range in scale from small concerts in galleries to large-scale multi-media works in theaters and concert halls. Her solo works combine experimental extended vocal techniques, operatic bel canto, found objects, text, and sampled concrète sounds. She uses MAX MSP and Isadora software on a MacBook Pro along with custom MIDI controllers. One of her early instruments,The BodySynth™, was created by Chris Van Raalte and Ed Severinghaus (Copyright 1994), a MIDI controller that transforms movement, gestures, and other muscle efforts into sounds. Another part of her setup has been custom MIDI interfaces including faders, footswitch control pod, light controllers, and ultrasonic controllers, developed and fabricated by Donald Swearingen as part of his “N Degrees” system of sensor controllers. In this session, Pamela Z will demonstrate her current solo performance set-up, discuss how everything works and give a live performance/demonstration of some of the tools she uses in performance (including voice, processing, gesture control, and interaction with video.)

Pamela Z Performance Excerpts from Pamela Z on Vimeo.


Pamela Z is a composer/performer and media artist who makes solo works combining a wide range of vocal techniques with electronic processing, samples, gesture activated MIDI controllers, and video. She is based in San Fransisco/New York and has toured extensively throughout the US, Europe, and Japan. Her work has been presented at venues and exhibitions including Bang on a Can (NY), the Japan Interlink Festival, Other Minds (SF), the Venice Biennale, and the Dakar Biennale. She’s created installations and has composed scores for dance, film, and chamber ensembles (including Kronos Quartet). Her awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Doris Duke Artist Impact Award, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation residency, the Herb Alpert Award, and an Ars Electronica honorable mention, and the NEA/Japan-US Fellowship. On her visit to Norway she will do several talks and workshops, (UiO, WoNoMute/NTNU) concerts (Ny Musikk Trondheim, Voxlab Oslo) and also show the installation Sound Gestures at TEKS, Trondheim Electronic Art Center.

Recording of the Event

Tone Åse curated Pamela Z’s visit in Norway organising two talks at NTNU and UiO (WoNoMute talk and MCT4046 talk), the exhibition “Sonic Gestures” at Trondheim Electronic Arts Centre (with Espen Gangvik), and three concerts: a concert with Pamela Z, Sten Sandell and Tone Åse at Dokkhuset (Ny Musikk Trondheim), a concert with Pamela Z, Sten Sandell and Tone Åse at Melahuset (Voxlab spring festival, Oslo) and a solo concert at Vega Scene (Voxlab spring festival, Oslo).

A talk hosted at the Department of Musicology, University of Oslo in Oslo and live streamed through the MCT Portal to the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). The audience combines two physical sites (from Oslo and Trondheim).

This talk was part of the MCT4046 Sonification and Sound Design Seminar Series - Spring 2019.

Video Credits

Speaker: Pamela Z

Facilitator: Tone Åse

Video series: MCT4046 Sonification and Sound Design Seminar Series - Spring 2019

Video production: MCT students 2018-2020

Video recording: Shreejay Shrestha, Guy Sion

Audio recording: Jørgen Nygård Varpe

A/V editing & processing: Sepehr Haghighi

Design: Karolina Jawad

Music: Sepehr Haghighi

Technical support: Robin Støckert, Anders Tveit, Alexander Refsum Jensenius

Administration: Maj Vester Larsen

Consultant: Sigurd Saue

Seminar Series Curation: Anna Xambó

Recorded in NTNU Trondheim 2019