2012 AIDS through music


It started with Psychology major Phil Wozny approaching me with an idea about starting a science and art club. I agreed to be the advisor of such a club and his charisma attracted music, art, biology, physics and chemistry majors alike. Through a number of brainstorming sessions, they came up with the idea of creating a musical performance that models how the HIV virus proliferates through the body. Musical transcription modeled DNA transcription, and while "cells" of musicians played a simple musical score, "virus" composers mutated and inserted notes into the score until the cell eventually "died" in a wash of incoherent cacophony. There was a lot of problem solving of how to create the analogy in a scientifically accurate way, while still allowing for artistic integrity, as well as learning how to organize a complex, improvisational performance. They applied for and received a King Creativity Grant for recording equipment, and linked the performance to a silent auction of student-created pottery and other artwork to raise money for AIDS awareness and research. They performed it on Dec 1, 2012. The performance went beautifully. It was informative and enlightening, and aesthetically attractive in both its visual and musical execution. 

They were invited to give the performance again for the Austin community at the Art.Science.Gallery's fundraising event. 

You can read more details about their project through their King Creativity proposal: AIDS Through Music