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Music x Technology


Admission requirements

No admission requirements for this course.


The main topic of this course is the question how technological developments have resulted and will result in new forms of music. However, the relationship between technology and music is not just one-directional, technology has been shaped by developments in music as well. In this course we are primarily interested in music creation including composition processes, musical language and musical instruments or sound sources. Besides that, we are interested in developments in musical performance, presentation and distribution.

The course will address both academic, contemporary and popular electronic music. We will address the democratization of electronic music, the role of the internet, automatic music recognition, generative music and artificial intelligence.

In the course we will come across instruments like the Theremin, the Trautonium, the Mellotron, analogue synthesizers (Moog, Buchla, Arp, EMS), digital synthesizers while not forgetting the studio-based electronic music tradition that originates from the 1940’s.

In order to develop hands on experience we will use and zoom into the following open source software (Audacity, VCV Rack, Ardour, Pure Data, Automatonism, Google Magenta and more)

In the course a historical perspective will be created to not only create a context for discussion, it is meant to inspire new ideas and concepts. Although history plays an important role it is not a history course. Students are asked to study certain concepts that relate to their interest, try-out their ideas, present their work and engage in discussions.

Course objectives

  • The course aims to create a stimulating basis for critical thinking regarding the interrelation of Music and Technology

  • The course aims to stimulate the creation of new ideas and concepts focusing on the interrelation of Music and Technology


2018-2019, second semester
9 workgroup sessions, 1 exam

Tuesday evenings, from 19.00 to 21.00 hrs.

First workgroup meeting: 5 February 2019
Last workgroup meeting: 9 April 2019
Exam: 30 April 2019

No meeting on 19 March 2019.

The sessions take place at the Lipsius building, Cleveringaplaats 1, 2311 BD Leiden, room 001

Mode of instruction

Interactive seminar.
Course is taught by Edwin van der Heide

Course Load

The course has a study load of 5 ECTS.

Assessment method

The grading of the course is based on the homework assignments, student presentations, an essay and a creative work. Full attendance is a requirement in order to receive the credits for the course.


Blackboard will be used for:

  • sharing reading materials, classroom aids and similar

  • announcements

Reading list

Texts and other materials on or via Blackboard / Brightspace


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte
Registration (Contractonderwijs](


Dhr. ir. R.T.W.L. Schneemann
Dhr. E.F. Van der Heide


This course is intended for bachelor students and open to master students. The course is open for students of Leiden University, the Royal Conservatoire, the Royal Academy of Art and other institutions of higher education. The course has a maximum capacity of 22 participants.

For other courses in the domains of music and fine arts, please visit: Elective courses music and fine arts