Damian Stewart (New Zealand)

Damian Stewart

I’m currently an undergraduate at Victoria University, studying electroacoustic composition and computer science.

As well as composing (and as part of the composition process) I use my computer as a performance instrument, both solo and in groups – improvising, unprepared, sampling immediate noises around me, both accidental and deliberate, and incorporating these into music.

I play this in The Ascenscion Band (ascension05.tripod.com) a 10+ member noise orchestra which has performed at various festivals including the Wellington Fringe Festival 2005 (where we won Best Musical Performance), as well as my own project The Laptop Rhythm Pioneers which is about finding connections between dub, electroacoustic, prog/space rock, and free jazz/free noise musics by live improvisatory performances.

I am also involved in the creation of original soundtrack material – have completed soundtracks for two experimental short films and am working on sound for two feature-length documentaries.

I believe strongly in the power of music to manipulate/alter the mental states and emotions of listeners, especially untrained/’Joe Public’ listeners, given how visually-oriented our current culture is. With this in mind, I try to write music as social commentary, and music which sits outside of existing generic structures, be they academic or popular.

Damian Stewart participates in

  • SoundLAB
  • Edition III
    curated by Melody Parker-Carter