Recent progress in efficient physics-based synthesis of string instrument sound
Speaker: Esteban Maestre
Date: 06 October 2015 Time: 13:00-15:00
Location: Room 211, STEP-C, FORTH
Host: Prof. Athanasios Mouchtaris


Applications combining digital waveguides, modal synthesis, and finite-difference time-domain modeling will be presented in the context of efficient simulation of string instruments.

The first part of this talk will introduce a technique for modeling bridge admittances and body radiativity profiles from frequency response measurements on guitars and bowed string instruments. The formulation, relying on modal analysis, is then used to construct reflectance and radiativity models enabling efficient simulation of string plucks via digital waveguides.

The second half of the presentation will be devoted to a bow-string interaction model that combines digital waveguides and finite-differences. The bow-string interaction model, which features finite-width thermal friction and hair dynamics, is incorporated into the string synthesis framework to render sound from bowing control signals.


Esteban Maestre was born in Barcelona, Spain, in 1979. He received the BSc and MSc degrees in Electrical Engineering from Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Barcelona, in 2000 and 2003; and the DEA and PhD degrees in Computer Science and Digital Communication from Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, in 2006 and 2009.

From 2001 to 2006, he was a Lecturer at Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya. Esteban worked as a Researcher at Philips Research Laboratories Aachen, Germany, during 2003 and 2004. From 2004 to 2013, he was a Researcher and a Lecturer at the Music Technology Group, Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Esteban carried out pre- and post-doctoral research at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics, Stanford University between 2008 and 2014 working on physical modeling synthesis and gesture rendering for automatic control of bowed-string physical models. During stays in 2012, 2013, and 2015 Esteban worked with the Department of Applied Mathematics, Universidad Federico Santa Maria, Santiago, Chile. Today, through a Marie Curie IOF fellowship, Esteban pursues his research at the Computational Acoustics Modeling Lab of McGill University.

His research interests include sound analysis and synthesis, computational modeling of music performance, cognitive aspects of sensory-motor integration in music performance, and technology-enhanced music performance pedagogy.

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