Summer School


The Sound Music Conference Summer School 2020 has been postponed to 2021.

The Submission has been closed and will be reopened when the Scientific Commitees will have decided a more precise date. 

This is the first communication of general next steps. A more detailed message will follow over the next few days.

Please keep checking the SMC 2020 website and this page for new updates.

Thank you.

Admission to the SMC Summer School 2020

The theme of the SMC 2020 Summer School “Imaging Sound” will revolve around the audio-video integration. The Summer School will take place from June 20th through June 23rd, 2020. It is suitable for Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Audiovisual Studies or Music Technology students enrolled in a MA/MSc/PhD program in universities or conservatories. Participants will learn about state-of-the-art techniques in areas such as immersive virtual reality, computer animation, videogames, and musical performance, under the guidance of leading experts in the field.

A maximum of 20 students will be selected for participating in the Summer School. Applicants should express their interest by sending their CV and a letter of interest that clearly indicates their motivation and previous experience with sound and music computing to the email address by April 20th 2020. Selected participants will be notified by Monday May 4th 2020.

Participants will be offered free attendance to the SMC 2020 Summer School. Those who wish to attend the SMC 2020 Conference (June 24th-26th 2020) should pay the applicable Conference Registration Fee through the Conference website (Registration page).

Venue: Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi 24, 10129 Torino (Room to be defined).

Schedule (to be defined for 2021):

09:00-10:30 Lecture Session I

10:30-11:00 Informal Discussion

11:00-12:30 Lecture Session II

12:30-13:30 Lunch

13:30-15:00 Lecture Session III

15:00-15:30 Informal Discussion

15:30-17:00 Lecture Session IV 


Coordinator of the Summer School: Marco Masoero, DENERG Politecnico di Torino. 

Marco Masoero


Marco is professor at Politecnico di Torino, Department of Energy, and International Faculty Affiliate in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering of the University of Illinois at Chicago.  His teaching, research and consulting activity focuses on two main areas: Energy Efficiency and Applied Acoustics. He teaches graduate courses on the Design of HVAC Systems in the Mechanical Engineering and in the Energy Engineering programs, and on Sound Systems Engineering in the Cinema and Media Engineering program. His present activity mostly deals with architectural Acoustics, Acoustic Quality of Living and Working Spaces, Environmental acoustics and soundscapes. Recently, he has started working on the application of acoustical technologies in music and the performing arts, topics that he developed in close collaboration with the University and the Conservatory of Torino. He is artistic director of the classical music season of Politecnico di Torino “Polincontri Classica”

The course consists of four workshops, in which students will learn about the fundamental concepts, the techniques and the numerical tools employed in selected areas that involve the interaction between sound and image. The approach will balance theory and applications, and will allow the students to develop hands on experience in applications such as virtual reality, sound design, computer animation, videogames and musical composition.

The background knowledge and the HW/SW requirements for an effective participation to each workshop are indicated in the program below.

Day 1

Acoustical simulation and auralization for acoustical design and immersive virtual reality

Faculty: Lukas Aspöck, Institute of Technical Acoustics, RWTH Aachen University (Germany)

This workshop will cover the fundamentals of sound propagation and methods to simulate sound fields. The concept of auralization is introduced, which allows making virtual environments audible. Such simulations, which correspond to the physical environment of the modelled situation, have a wide application range, i.e. they can be used either in scientific research experiments, for architectural or industrial design processes or in immersive virtual reality environments. The following topics will be addressed in this course:

  • Basics of sound propagation, room acoustics and sound perception
  • Acoustical simulation based on geometrical acoustics
  • Auralization: Signal theory and binaural synthesis
  • Implementation and examples of auralizations and virtual reality systems

The course is rounded off by a practical exercise in which the students will learn to design and simulate a virtual room (e.g., a concert hall) using the modelling software SketchUp in combination with a plug-in for room acoustical simulation and auralization.

Lukas Aspöck


Lukas Aspöck received a diploma degree in computer engineering with a focus in media engineering at RWTH Aachen University, Germany, in 2012. Afterwards he started his career as a researcher supervised by Prof. Michael Vorländer at the Institute of Technical Acoustics in Aachen, pursuing research in different projects related to virtual acoustics, room acoustics and acoustical simulation. Since the end of 2015, he is the head of the virtual acoustics workgroup mentoring several PhD and master students at the Institute. In 2020 he will receive his PhD degree in the field of validation of room acoustic simulation. His main teaching activities involve a lecture on Acoustic Virtual Reality, a seminar on room acoustics and various laboratory course experiments about technical and virtual acoustics.

Day 2

The audio-video integration in computer animation

Faculty: Andrea Sanna and Federico Manuri, DAUIN Politecnico di Torino, Paolo Armao, sound designer at 34BigThings, Torino (Italy)

This workshop aims to provide students an overview of techniques and methodologies used to design and develop computer graphics animations. Starting from a brief analysis of film history and movie aesthetics, students will recognize why the human brain processes visuals much faster than text and which are the reasons why we prefer information packaged as stories.

Animation has always been one of the contexts that offer sound designers great stimuli for research and experimentation. Starting from the definition of the workflow and of the aesthetics, based on the indications provided by directors and producers, the different processes of sound effects production, from Foley Artistry to synthesis, will be analysed. Base techniques for recording, editing, mixing and optimization of contents, depending on delivery support, will be presented. Participants will then design the soundtrack of an animated short, from the definition of the “Sound Bible” to the production of original contents. Participants must be equipped with portable PC and headphones; furthermore, a basic knowledge of DAW Reaper is required.

The second part of the workshop will focus on the video aspect. Starting from 3D scene modelling, light positioning, camera movements, character pose and animation will be introduced. The main goal is to provide students skills to animate 3D virtual characters and make videos in computer animation by means of modeling, animation, and rendering tools. In particular, students will learn the:

  • knowledge of direct and inverse kinematic and the ability to pose a virtual character
  • knowledge of main techniques for motion control and the ability to apply them in controlling the motion of a virtual character
  • ability of analyzing and developing constrained systems
  • ability to synchronize sound and animation

Theoretical concepts will be immediately applied by considering several case studies implemented by the open software Blender.

Andrea Sanna


Andrea Sanna graduated in electronic engineering in 1993, and received the PhD degree in computer engineering in 1997, both from Politecnico di Torino, Italy. Currently, he is an associate professor at the Department of Control and Computer Engineering. He has authored and coauthored of 200 papers in the areas of computer graphics, virtual reality, parallel and distributed computing, scientific visualization, and computational geometry. His teaching activities mainly concern computer graphics, computer animation and HCI. He is a senior member of ACM and serves as reviewer for a number of international conferences and journals.


Federico Manuri


Federico Manuri received the B.Sc., M.Sc. and PH.D. degrees in computer engineering in 2008, 2011 and 2017, from Politecnico di Torino, Italy. Currently, he is a postdoctoral research assistant at the Department of Control and Computer Engineering. His research interests include human machine interaction, computer graphics, virtual reality and augmented reality. His teaching activities mainly concern 3D modelling and computer animation.

Day 3

Sound design for videogames

Faculty: Paolo Armao, sound designer at 34BigThings, Torino (Italy)

During the workshop, techniques and approaches utilized for real-time sound design for videogames will be presented. Starting from the dialogue with game designers and the continuous discussion with developers, all the aspects relative to the creation of soundtracks and dynamic sound effects will be tackled through the analysis of the echniques for middleware implementation within the game engine. Particular attention will be devoted to the presentation of the tools used to support the creative process, respecting the production and technological needs.

Paolo Armao


Paolo is a sound designer with 10+ years of experience in video games, film, animation movies, currently working as a Lead Sound Designer at 34BigThings on the Redout saga. He is approaching his work with a particular eye on experimental audio recording techniques, creative solutions in sound effects production, always aiming at supporting the audio-visual experience creating emotional connections. Paolo lectures at the Animation Department at the Italian National Film School, sharing his approaches on sound design to support concept and story development. He was also founder and Sound Design faculty at Experimental Film Virginia, where the focus is to support films that investigate the intersection between sound and movement.

Day 4

Fluid Corpus Manipulation: creative and programmatic approaches to sound banks

Faculty: Pierre Alexandre Tremblay, Owen Green, Gerard Roma, Huddersfield University, Huddersfield (UK).

The Fluid Corpus Manipulation project (FluCoMA) is about enabling new ways of making music with ever- growing banks of sound and gestures by making available breakthroughs in DSP and machine learning in the environments used by creative coding musicians (Max, SuperCollider, PureData and the command line). These will come in two toolboxes, the first focuses on signal decomposition [1]. The second toolbox extends this by providing tools for working with and exploring our sound banks.

The workshop will take the users through the first toolbox, for signal decomposition, which allows creative coders to expand their sound banks through various paradigms: slices, layers, and objects, as described here ( d ecomp). In the second part of the day, we will give a sneak preview of a beta version of the second toolset, allowing the participants to experiment with various methods to observe, query, hybridise and interpolate their newly expanded sound banks.

Students will learn:

  • non trivial aspect of decomposing, segmenting, and describing sounds
  • how to use this new functionality as a creative device
  • basic machine listening and data analysis approaches to make sense of the newly segmented and described sounds

This workshop is hands on: each participant will be coding with the toolset throughout the day.

Requirements: Participants need to come with a portable 64-bit computer (Mac, Windows, Linux) with Max, Supercollider or PureData installed, and headphones. Experience in one of these environments will be assumed.

System requirements: Mac OS 10.7 or above; Windows 10 or above; Ubuntu 16.04 or later (or equivalent) Max 7 or above; SuperCollider 3.10 or above; PureData 0.51 or above University of Huddersfield inspiring global professionals.


The Fluid Corpus Manipulation team is made of Owen Green (UK), Gerard Roma (ES), and Pierre Alexandre Tremblay (CA), all based at the CeReNeM, University of Huddersfield. They will share the running of the workshop. Composer-improviser, theorist and builder of strange hybrid instruments/pieces, Dr Green is a Research Fellow in Creative Coding. Specialist in sound analysis and retrieval, as well as a music hacker and a live coder, Dr Roma is a Research Fellow in Interactive Machine Listening. Composer and improviser of electronic and mixed music, creative coder and producer, Prof Tremblay was the instigator of FluCoMa, and is supporting the emerging community around the new toolset of code and knowledge. More details on