Sarah Pickett, Assistant Professor of Sound Design and Caden Manson, Associate Professor in the John Wells Directing Program have been named among the winners of the inaugura Fund for Research and Creativity Awards.

The College of Fine Arts Fund for Research and Creativity (FRC) was established in 2015 by President Subra Suresh of Carnegie Mellon University and supplemented by the College of Fine Arts to support research and creative projects across the CFA. It is established in recognition that there are few funding sources in the governmental, corporate, philanthropic or private sectors for the arts.

FRC funding is available to all full-time faculty members within the College of Fine Arts. Once a year the Fund for Research and Creativity committee evaluates applications and can distribute up to $50,000 in awards.

Mason proposed a project called “Opacity:”

Opacity is a research project and live mediated performance developed around the conceptual framework of the “interface,” specifically the threat of increasing occultation of the interface and the intermediation of algorithms between the real and the experienced. Opacity investigates topics of representation, liberty, control, surveillance, liveness, networks and political resistance.

Pickett’s proposal is entitled “The roots of music and sound in Shakespeare: An Interactive Installation:”

This project will involve research into the early use of sound and music in Shakespeare’s plays during the Elizabethan era. The project will also include a performance/installation component utilizing the First Folio text of Hamlet that will allow the user to interact with the text and sound in a live setting. I hope to bring sound to life in a way that ignites the audience’s imagination and gives a sense of what the experience might have been. In addition to highlighting the historical importance of sound, the project will also show how this translates to contemporary productions.