Stephen Malinowski

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Stephen Malinowski

Stephen Anthony Malinowski is an American composer, pianist, educator, software engineer, and inventor. He was born on August 6, 1953 in Santa Monica, California in the United States.[1]

He is best known for his musical animations and his computer program, the Music Animation Machine, which produces animated graphical scores.[2][3] He visualizes music using a system of colored shapes, taking information from a MIDI file.[4] He has collaborated with artists such as Vincent Lo, Alexander Peskanov, Björk, and the Del Sol Quartet.[5]

Malinowski studied music theory and composition with Thea Musgrave, Peter Fricker, Stanley Dale Krebs, and David Barton at the College of Creative Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he received a B.M. in 1981 and was a guest lecturer 1981–1982.[1]

He began his experiments with animated graphical scores in 1974 after taking LSD and listening to Johann Sebastian Bach.[6] The first version of the Music Animation Machine software was created in 1985.[7] In 1984 he began working as a software engineer. In 1990 Malinowski started selling video tapes with his animations on them, and Classic Arts Showcase began broadcasting his animations. In 2001, he began working on psychoacoustically inspired audio processing algorithms.[1]

In 2012, he developed a version of his Music Animation Machine that could synchronize his animations with realtime performances; he premiered it with the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Alexander Shelley, on October 12 and 13.[8] He also showcased the same technology in a TEDx talk in Zurich.[1]

His animations have been featured by the recording artist Björk[9][10][11] and also have been featured at the TEDx conference in Zurich, Switzerland.

As of June 13, 2017, his YouTube Channel featuring his musical animations had received over 150 million views.


  1. ^ a b c d "Stephen Malinowski". TEDx Zurich. Archived from the original on 18 January 2013. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
  2. ^ Knowledge-Based Intelligent Information and Engineering Systems: 11th International Conference, KES 2007, Vietri sul Mare, Italy, September 12–14, 2007, Proceedings. Springer. 2007. p. 292.
  3. ^ Anceschi, Alessandra (2012). "Music Animation Machine: Intervista a Stephen Anthony Malinowski" (PDF). Musica Domani. 42 (163): 32–38.
  4. ^ Isaacson, Eric (2005). "What You See Is What You Get: on Visualizing Music" (PDF). Online Proceedings: ISMIR 2005 6th International Conference on Music Information Retrieval. p. 392.
  5. ^ "Dazed and Confused, full interview with Stephen Malinowski (and photo outtakes)". Dazed and Confused Magazine. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
  6. ^ Burrows, Tim. "Stephen Malinowski's LSD Art". Dazed and Confused. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
  7. ^ Popova, Maria. "The Music Animation Machine". Brain Pickings. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
  8. ^ "Stephen Malinowski's Visualizations". Ynight. Retrieved 24 January 2013.
  9. ^ "Le site francophone sur Björk". Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  10. ^ Holmes, Kevin (February 14, 2012). "Animating Björk's Biophilia: Q&A With Stephen Malinowski". Creators Project. Archived from the original on January 31, 2013.
  11. ^ "Björk Unveils 'Vulnicura' During Emotional NYC Matinee Show". Retrieved 7 March 2015.

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