Resonance: A Summer Sound Intensive

This immersive program provides a collaborative environment for hands-on experience in a variety of media contexts. Participants will acquire in-depth experience with sound recording, editing, studio practice, sound with moving image, as well as creating experimental sound instruments, composition, and performance.




This 3-week immersive program provides a collaborative environment for hands-on experience and insights into the innovative use of sound practices in art, design and media. Participants will acquire in-depth experience with sound recording, editing, studio practice, sound with moving image, as well as creating experimental sound instruments, composition, and performance.

The program will cover a variety of subjects with a focus on understanding how sound shapes our perception of the world around us and the many ways sound can be used to communicate to others. The program will explore a variety of ways that practitioners can use sound as a starting point, or in conjunction with other mediums, to fully impart creative ideas, explore compositional forms, and create meaningful aural imagery.

Students, artists, sound designers, producers, gamers, composers and musicians will gain interactive experiences and expertise into the innovative use of sound, best practices composition, experimentation, performance and production in art and design.

The Summer Sound Intensive concludes with a public presentation of final projects produced in the program.


    • Gain an understanding of the basics of acoustic communication, psychoacoustics, and soundscapes.
    • Explore techniques in recording sound on location, environmental sound, film production sound, and creative sound effect recording.
    • Develop a proficiency within the recording studio environment including live recording, Foley for film and experimental techniques for sound and music.
    • Investigate working with the voice, including spoken word, dialogue editing, and ADR.
    • Understand the theory and practice of creative sound design for the moving image, sfx design
    • Experiment with musical instrument building, from found and constructed materials, including building electronic and digital manipulation devices.
    • Learn how to create your own unique tools of expression by hacking existing instruments using electronics, sensors, mics and pickups.
    • Experience the fundamentals of sound composition, group improvisation, and performance in a collaborative environment.
    • Achieve a deep understanding of sound and music for film, through analyzing and screening films
    • Acquire hands-on experience developing sound and music for games 


The program is presented in a variety of formats including lectures, workshops, hands on practice, open labs, and participant-led projects resulting in open presentations. Evening screenings and a final presentation celebation adds to the richness of this intensive experience.


Admission to the Summer Sound Intensive is open to artists and students at all levels, although previous experience in sound is highly recommended. All students entering the program must meet the following requirements:

•    Students must be over the age of 18 and should have completed Grade 12 or equivalent education
•    Proficiency in the English Language

*As a guideline, we expect applicants to have an IELTS score of 4-5 for studio courses and 6.0 for lecture courses.

Applicants whose first language is not English, regardless of immigration or citizenship status, must submit one of the following English Language Proficiency tests. See the Program Curriculum Handbook for more information.


Each Participant will be required to supply:

  • their own high-quality over the ear headphones (not earbuds)
  • their own data storage high capacity USB 3 drives (a back-up is recommended)

Each student will need to purchase a $200 ECU supply kit, supplied by ECU, that includes:

  • Prototyping Kits: Raspberry Pi, Lots of Pots Board, Micro SD card, MicroUSB to USB cable, Contact Mic     
  • Prototyping Materials: Foam Core, Xacto knives, Glue Guns
  • Instrument Building supplies: PVC piping, Strings, Metal strips, Wood


This intensive is 157 hours over 17 days consisting of:

  • 91 hours of guided instruction
  • 32 hours of open lab time
  • 24 hours of film screenings
  • 10 hours Presentation preparation + celebration


Students are evaluated through the completion of applied assignments and projects. All assignments must be completed to the evaluative standard set by the instructors to satisfy the learning outcomes of the program. Professional conduct, collaboration and teamwork, time management, organization, communication, participation and attendance, will also affect the final grade. Attendance is compulsory and students must attend a minimum of 85% of classes in order to receive a passing grade. A minimum B is required to achieve a passing grade. 


Students successfully completing this program are able to apply for an ECU Award of Achievement in Sound Arts and Design credential. Students have the opportunity to apply their Summer Sound Intensive hours to transfer credits toward electives courses within the Bachelor of Media Arts program at ECU.



All assessments are reported to the Continuing Studies Student Records Department where an official Transcript of Achievement is organized to show the final grade for this program. 


DENNIS BURKE, MFA is an award-winning composer and sound designer for film and TV who over the past 30 years has completed over 120 films for theatrical, television and festivals world-wide. In addition, he has created a number of multi-media sound works, installations, and web-based interactive collaborations both as a solo artist and in collaboration with the likes of David Rimmer, Stan Douglas and Landon Mackenzie.

Dennis has been a professional musician for 40 years performing throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Over his career he has performed with many jazz greats including Mose Allison, Jay Clayton, Sam Rivers, Herb Ellis, and Ernestine Anderson.

Dennis has been an Associate Professor Emily Carr University since 1987 where he also served as Associate Dean of Curriculum for 5 years. He has also held a number of Academic positions including Chapman University, Occidental College and currently as Adjunct Lecturer in the Film and Electronic Arts Department at Cal State University, Long Beach.

HAIG ARMEN is a professor and designer living in Vancouver, Canada. For the last 6 years Haig has lead the Interaction Design Major at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. His research explores the intersection of design and programming, focusing on data visualization, gestural interfaces and music technology. His most recent efforts are in design-led entrepreneurship and creating new musical instruments using emerging technologies.

Haig’s background is in music and architecture with an extensive career as a professional musician and composer. Over the past two decades Haig has designed interactive work for prestigious clients like CBC, BMW, Chanel & Nokia. As a producer of CBC Radio 3′s ground breaking online magazine during 2001-2005, Haig has received international design awards including Webby Awards, Prix Italia and Art Director’s Club of New York. When Haig’s not teaching or hanging out with his family he can be found playing jazz guitar, hacking instruments and coding.


GORDON DURITY has over 30 years’ experience in creating soundtracks, writing songs and producing audio in the areas of film, television, games, multimedia, and album production. He currently serves as an Executive Audio Director at Electronic Arts, one of the largest developers of video games in the world. There Gordon designs and supervises the creation and implementation of audio for various titles, works with technical staff to develop new cutting-edge technologies, sits on game design groups, and supervises audio at various EA Studios locations worldwide.

Gordon currently serves as a consultant to educational institutions, film and music industries on how best to maximize opportunities in the exploding games and multimedia industries. He has also been a guest lecturer at Simon Fraser University, University of British Columbia and Emily Carr University of the Arts. 

As a composer, Gordon has written scores for feature and short films, television, radio, dance, theatre, runway shows and games. Gordon has produced and written with many international artists and has had songs charted all over the world. He has worked for USA Network, Fox, Disney, Paramount, CBC, BBC, Trimark, NFB, PBS, ABC, and many independents. Gordon’s current research focus is on audio and experience design and implementation for virtual environments for Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality, and machine learning-based speech synthesis.