Alex Ruthmann


S. Alex Ruthmann is Associate Professor of Music Education & Music Technology, and the Director of the NYU Music Experience Design Lab (MusEDLab) at NYU Steinhardt. He holds affiliate appointments with the NYU Digital Media Design for Learning program, and the Program on Creativity and Innovation at NYU Shanghai. He currently serves as Chair of the Music in Schools and Teacher Education Commission for the International Society for Music Education.

Ruthmann is co-author of Scratch Music Projects, a new book published by Oxford University Press bringing creative music and coding projects to students and educators. He is co-editor of the Oxford Handbook of Technology and Music Education, and the Routledge Companion to Music, Technology and Education. He also serves as Associate Editor of the Journal of Music, Technology, and Education.

Ruthmann’s research focuses on the design of new technologies and experiences for music making, learning and engagement. Partners include the New York Philharmonic, Shanghai Symphony, Peter Gabriel, Herbie Hancock, Yungu and Portfolio Schools, Tinkamo, UNESCO, and the Rock and Roll Forever Foundation. The MusEDLab creative learning and software projects are in active use by over 900,000 people in over 150 countries across the world.

2019.20 Artistic Research Residency

Designing Interactive Musical Tools for Digital Cultural Engagement & Learning.
In collaboration with the Pedagogy and Cultural Action (PAC) IRCAM Department.

The purpose of this residency is to collaborate with IRCAM cultural engagement and education staff, as well as the IRCAM archives, to design playful, web-based interactive digital musical engagement and learning experiences building on prototypes created at the NYU Music Experience Design Lab. The residency will include hosting prototyping and user-feedback workshops, and open design studios with selected staff, audience members, educators and young people as part of a collaborative design process to prototype and implement new digital cultural engagement tools and a prototype educational program with IRCAM staff. 

The experiences developed will promote musical creation and engagement with new music and contemporary media for creativity and learning. The interfaces developed in this residency will reside on an open web-based platform to be hosted and managed collaboratively between the NYU MusEDLab and IRCAM. All digital tools developed will be accessible by end users on their personal computers and smart phones without needing costly specialized music or audio hardware.


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