Skip to main content

Winter 2018

Visiting Speaker: David Lowery

David Lowery discussed the contemporary music industry and artists’ rights in the digital age as a special guest in Professor Jacob Smith’s course “History of the Recording Industry” on March 1, 2018. Lowery is a musician, producer, entrepreneur, and artists’ rights advocate. He founded the critically acclaimed bands Camper Van Beethoven and Cracker, helping to jump-start the Indie Rock movement and producing top-ten radio tracks and three platinum albums. He teaches about the economics and finance of the music business at the University of Georgia.

Career Trek: Chicago Public Media

MA in Sound Arts and Industries students visited Chicago Public Media on February 23, 2018. They toured the workspaces and studios of WBEZ 91.5FM, followed by a discussion on working in public radio, building podcasts, and finding work in audio.

Career Trek: 2112 and Fort Knox Studios

On February 16, 2018 MA in Sound Arts and Industries students toured incubator 2112 and Fort Knox Studios before attending a panel discussion covering careers in audio. 2112 is Chicago’s first incubator focused on the development of business and entrepreneurs in music, film/video and creative technology. Fort Knox Studios is the premier facility in the Midwest for music rehearsal, recording, and production as well as independent film, video, and photography and space for aligned creative industry businesses. 

Speaker Series: Harmonix Music Systems

Steve Pardo, Senior Sound Designer and Lead Composer at Harmonix Music Systems, returned to Northwestern February 12, 2018 to discuss sound design and music systems for digital games and virtual reality. Harmonix Music Systems is one of the world’s leading independent game development studios, best known for creating blockbuster franchises like Rock Band and Dance Central.

Career Trek: Shure, Inc.

MA in Sound Arts and Industries students visited and toured Shure, Inc. in Niles, IL on February 2, 2018. During the visit, students learned about the company’s history, their new location opening in Chicago, and internship opportunities.

WildClaw Theatre Performance

On January 29, 2018 Foley artists and a cast from WildClaw Theatre, Chicago’s premier horror theatre, visited Northwestern and performed live-radio horror plays from three of their favorites from the last ten years of their annual and infamous horror competition: Deathscribe. The event was sponsored by the MA in Sound Arts and Industries.

Visiting Speaker: Jennifer Stoever

On January 25, 2018 Jennifer Stoever gave a talk centered on the fifth chapter of her book The Sonic Color Line: Race and the Cultural Politics of Listening. The talk focused on the culmination of the sonic color line’s rise to significance as a central force of racialization in American life and the increasing entanglement of the listening ear with sound reproduction technologies. Stoever explained how the sonic color line connected U.S. radio’s so-called golden age to legal segregation, arguing that this relationship enabled the construction of liberal color blindness as a citizenship ideal following World War II. Post-1945, the white listening ear increasingly demanded conformity to white middle-class sonic norms as the price of citizenship, a dire problem reverberating in our contemporary moment. Stoever is Associate Professor of English at Binghamton University and Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sounding Out!: The Sound Studies Blog.

Masterclass: Voiceover with Donna Jay Fulks

On January 19, 2018 voiceover artist Donna Jay Fulks led a masterclass in the Northwestern Soundstage. In the first part of the masterclass, Fulks lectured on voiceover types, techniques, and equipment, as well as the audition process, promotion, and finding work in the field. In the second part, students had the opportunity to perform their own voiceovers with Fulks’ guidance.

Virtual Chat: Josh Moshier

Josh Moshier led a virtual discussion on January 18, 2018 with MA in Sound Arts and Industries students. After going over his background, he covered industry trends before diving into skills and opportunities for composing and working in the music industry. Moshier is a composer for Google’s Earth VR as well as series and features on FX, Netflix and IFC.