Revealing the Building Blocks of Musical Perception

While music theory fundamentals are generally well-explored and understood, the way humans actually perceive music is far less so. Gaining a fuller picture of musical perception adds layers of inspiration to the creative process.

In this presentation, composer and sound designer, Meara O'Reilly, introduces the musical form known as hocketing. Hockets are a disorienting musical form, created by splitting a single melody across multiple voices in space, often rapidly alternating. The practice dates back to the 13th century, and is found in musical traditions all over the world. In a contemporary context, hocketing can be applied to cognitive research, shedding new light on the curious nature of human musical perception.

Together we’ll learn how to write a hocket, why so-called “disorienting music” plays with the sense of human musical perception, and how these basic principles can be used to both visualize and create new musical ideas.


Please note: Space in Studio 1 is strictly limited. Please arrive early to ensure you'll get in.

Date & Location

EastWest Studio 1


Meara O’Reilly

Meara O’Reilly

Meara O’Reilly is a Los Angeles based composer, artist and educator, with a focus on perception and new musical interfaces.