COBI VAN TONDER
Cobi van Tonder is a South African composer and sound artist based in Berlin since 2014. She
holds a PhD in Music Composition, ATRL, Trinity College, Ireland; a Masters of Fine Arts
Degree from Stanford University, and an Honours Degree in music at the University of the
Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, SA. She is also a proud mother since 2014. Her work has
received a UNESCO award amongst others. Van Tonder has also been artist-in-residence for
Zero One/IDEO/Villa Montalvo (USA), Akademie Schloss Solitude (Germany), International
Guest Artists Residency (Toronto), P.Arty, Seoul (S. Korea) and Music OMI (USA). Her work has
been performed and showed in New York, London, San Jose, San Francisco, Seoul, Stuttgart,
Berlin, Ogaki, Toronto, South Africa, Dublin, Belfast, Derry and Antarctica. Works explore
spatiality of sound, micro ‘internal’ properties of sound, acoustics, sonic architecture, sound
perception, the physicality of sound and the experience of vibration via unique microtonal tuning
systems and expanded ways of listening.
2018: SEA(S)GRANTS 2018, Ionion Centre for the Arts and Culture, Kefalonia, Greece.
2012-2016: Scholarship awardee for PhD Digital Arts and Humanities, Trinity College, Ireland.
2014: Trinity College Performing Arts Grant for world premiere concert in Dublin of String
2008: Chavín de Huántar Archaeological Acoustics Project: collaboration between Stanford
University's Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) and Archaeology/
Anthropology. Sponsored by National Geographic and SICA.
2008: P.Arty, residency, Seoul, Korea for installation and performance of Skatesonic.
2007: Scholarship awardee for MFA Arts Stanford, California. 2005-2006: ZERO ONE/IDEO
artist-in-residence, Villa Montalvo. Collaboration with IDEO, Palo Alto. Create version one of
2007: Music OMI International Musicians Residency, Hudson, NY.
2006: 12 months fellowship from Akademie Schloss Solitude, Germany
2006: International Guest Artists Residency, Torronto. Physical, sonic, design, animation and
2004: Digital Pluralism – UNESCO Digital Arts Award for Ephemeral Gumboots.
2004: IAMAS Art Residency to develop and exhibit Ephemeral Gumboots in Ogaki, Japan.
(Institute of Advanced Media Arts and Sciences /International Academy of Media Arts and
Sciences), dedicated to the theme of SCHOOL OF FUTURES.
2012-2016 - PhD Digital Arts and Humanities, in the Department of Film, Drama and Music,
Trinity College, Ireland.
2009: MFA Art Practice, Stanford University, USA with Paul DeMarinis.
2004-2007: Composition encounters with Kevin Volans.
2005: BHons in Music at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
SELECTED COMPOSITIONS AND INTERVENSIONS
2018: Goodbye Anthill, Extended Voice trio, Blind Signal, Berlin.
2018: Esponja Drone Soundtrack, Grüner Salon, Volksbühne, Berlin.
2018: Telepathic Resistance solo performance as Telepathic Being, Freaksdorf, Berlin.
2017: Telepathic Resistance solo performance as Telepathic Being, Noisebridge, Berlin.
2016: Fata Morgana for Female Choir, Percussion and Computer, 30’, Premiere ATRL, Trinity.
2015: Haute Rorschach – microtonal electronic music, 8’30”, Premiere ATRL, Trinity.
2015: When all memory is gone – microtonal electronic music, 12’, Premiere ATRL, Trinity.
2015: Gala for 8-12 musicians, 5’, Bandcamp Album.
2014: Drift for 12 musicians, 12’, Bandcamp Album.
2014: Mutation 2 for 4 musicians, 13’, Bandcamp Album.
2013: Relativity for Voice and Tape (8min) - with vocalist Michelle O’Rourke - Printing Room,
2013: String Quartet No 1 ‘KO’ (18min) – Premiere ATRL, Trinity.
2012: EXPLODE/IMPLODE (20min) - 42 channel Spatial Audio, Premiere SARC, Queens
University for the Sonic Lab performance space.
2010: Tristan Time Space Continuum - for Trumpet, Trombone & Cello - Der Sommer in
Stuttgart - mit Musik der Jahrhunderte, Germany.
2008: Release of Chupacabra on GLU-music with Susanne M. Winterling.
2008: Delay, imrprovisation piece for a Soundwire Ensemble networked performance. Under
the lead of Chris Chafe with participating ensembles at other institutions (Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute, Princeton, UCSD, UCSC, and others).
2007: Memory and Distance for Solo Cello performed by Gavriel Lipkind as part of the Solitude
Cycle, Ludwigsburg, Germany.
2007: SNOW, Audio CD release, Merz/Solitude, Germany, in the Reihe Projektiv series.
2007: Performance of Blow composed during Music OMI International Musicians Residency
CONCERT, New York City.
2007: Golden Summer Mistake for Soprano and Harpsichord. Soprano Angelika Luz and
pianist/harpsichordist Florian Holscher. Kein Liederabend, Stuttgart.
2006: Benign Positional Vertigo for 9-piece ensemble, performed by Ensemble Ascolta.
Stuttgart, ISCM World New Music Festival 2006 grenzenlos during the Festival Sommer in
SELECTED INTERMEDIA AND INSTALLATIONS
2017: Partial Soundtrack for Serpent Rain - Arjuna Neuman, Denise Ferreira da Silva, Bergen.
2013: 7Rooms, String Quartet with spatial audio processing to film, Derry Culture Tech Festival.
2011: Lullaby for Infrasound Bed (40min loop) - Toffee Festival, City Hall Cape Town.
2010: Streams, 16.8 channel sound sculpture - with Max/MSP and Cymascope (a sound
healing device) frequency dial tones. The Compound, San Francisco.
2010: Static Blackout, 16.8 channel sound sculpture - with Max/MSP and Nord Modular Synth.
The Compound, San Francisco.
2010: Looping I, recursive projections with light, glass and live video. An installation using Max/
MSP/Jitter, 2 live cameras and 3 projectors, The Compound, San Francisco.
2009: The Sleeping - HD Video Performance, China Town, San Francisco - video stolen.
2009: Wunderflater, Sculpture/Architecture/Installation/Networked live audio-feed. Supercollider
mixer in combination with a Linux Network Audio protocol called Jacktrip to link up seven remote
spaces acoustically. Tomas Walton Gallery, Stanford. MFA group collaborative show with
Michael Arcega, Reed Anderson, Kazumi Shiho and Jina Valentine and with much help from
CCRMA (Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics) who developed Jacktrip.
2009: Vuurvangerkindmens, HD Video and 16-channel sound diffusion, CCRMA Stage,
2008: Live underwater-generated sound performance for Red Rover dance event. Department
of Drama and the Dance Division Co-sponsored by SICA and Stanford Lively Arts.
2008: Noexi(s)t, HD Video and 8-channel sound diffusion, CCRMA stage, Stanford.
2008: 8x8x8 Black Sensory Box, Stanford (2008).
2008: Skatesonic Interactive skateboard and music project for P.A.R.Ty Seoul, Korea.
2016: Plastic Continuity in Microtonal Music, PhD Doctorate Thesis, Trinity College.
2009: Memory Scene, MFA Thesis, Art and Art History Department of Stanford.
2004: Music Composition and Performance in Interactive Computer/Human
Systems, Wits School of Arts, Johannesburg.