Students Composing with MIDI

I feel like I have finally found an article that will help me make sense of what it is that I would like to convey about MIDI. I know that I want to advocate that innovation in MIDI needs to be fostered and that MIDI need to be more accessible to all people no matter their musical skill or abilities. Most of the information that I have already gathered supports the beneficial aspects of using MIDI and now I just need to be able to further expand on this and show people that because of MIDI’s good uses they need to be more prevalent so people can use them at will. I feel that my potential argument is still a little broad but I’m working on narrowing down in the mean time.

So back to my new academic article, which just so happens to be the best piece of information I have found so far. Samuel Airy, who works at a Music and Audio Institute, and Judy M. Parr, who works at the University of Auckland, are both from New Zealand and have collaborated on promoting the use of MIDI in schools so they published MIDI, Music and Me: Students’ Perspectives on Composing with MIDI. It details the study of a group of students using MIDI sequencing to create a musical performance for a course offered through their school and their input on composing music with the help of MIDI. The participants were drawn equally from the year 1 certificate level and year 2 diploma level courses in Audio Engineering and Music Production at the University of Auckland and interviewed about the MIDI course to see how it was or was not beneficial and in what aspects of the music production. A majority of the students in the study had not participated in formal music education prior to this course but in the end of the course all of them reported that they really enjoyed creating music with the MIDI. Features such as being able to cut and paste musical segments, being able to pick from a variety of instruments, and presenting the notes used in the composition in way the people can understand even though they can’t read music allowed students to see music making in a fun way that they could take part in.

This study had students use keyboard MIDI. Here’s an example of a keyboard MIDI.

I found this article such an eye opener for myself personally because in a way it says exactly what I would like to say in my final paper just applied in a different context. Airy and Parr want to promote the use of MIDI in schools and I wanted to promote the accessibility of MIDI everywhere. Now that I think about it, all of my other academic articles talk about having courses that bring more students in contact with MIDI and I kind of feel that this should be my new topic. All of my articles can be synthesized together to support this claim and I still get to have my own personal input on the use of MIDI. I feel that this might be easier for me to do and hopefully I can pull it all together. Wish me luck!!


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