Bob Pritchard’s creative work includes experimental concert music, interactive music and video pieces, direct synthesis, sound installations, video/film, radio sound, and software development. His music is performed and broadcast internationally, and he is often commissioned by some of Canada’s leading performers.
His works have twice been selected as Canadian submissions to the ISCM, and in 2007 his interactive piece Strength for saxophone and video received a Unique Award of Merit from the Canadian Society of Cinematographers. In 1993 he created the sound for Watt’s Welcome to the Widget Factory which received a Jack Webster Award, and in 2008 his short film Crisis was part of Robertson’s cancer documentary 17 Short Films About Breasts which was nominated for five Leos.
As a music technology researcher he is active in the development of software tools for performance environments: in 2004 he received a 3-year Artist-Researcher grant from SSHRC, developing cyberglove-controlled speech synthesis and in 2007 Pritchard, Fels, and Vatikiotis-Bateson received a 3-year Canada Council/NSERC grant for the development of Digital Ventriloquized Actors (DiVAs) combining gestural control of speech synthesis with virtual faces. In 2009 Keith Hamel and he received a 3-year SSHRC grant for the development of automated score-following systems.
As an undergraduate Pritchard studied composition and theory at the University of British Columbia, and received an M.Mus in composition from the University of Toronto. While there he also became active with the Structured Sound Synthesis Project in the U. of T. Computer Systems Research Group. During the 1990’s he taught at Brock University where he also served twice as the head of Music. In the late 1990’s he returned to B.C. to complete a doctorate in composition with a specialty in computer applications. He now teaches electroacoustics, music theory, laptop orchestra, and interdisciplinary projects at the University of British Columbia School of Music.
Pritchard is co-director of UBC’s MUsic, Sound and Electroacoustic Technology group (MUSET), and is a full researcher with the Media And Graphics Interdisciplinary Centre (MAGIC) and the Institute for Computing, Information, and Cognitive Science (ICICS). Bob Pritchard was also the Chair of the Canadian Music Centre’s British Columbia region from 2011 to 2014.