Synthposium 2015


SAE Institute presented its inaugural Synthposium on Thursday the 13th of August, 2015, from 6pm until 9pm. The evening featured a panel discussion from a selection of synthesizer experts along with demonstrations and hands-on tweaking of vintage gear.

The Synthposium panel included Les Craythorn, Andrew Duffield, David Carbone and Shags Chamberlain, who provided insights into their use of synthesizer technology over preceding decades. Each presenter offered unique perspectives on the origins, appeal, and possible future of synthesizers, with the discussion chaired by SAE Institute lecturer and Clan Analogue Label Manager Nick Wilson.

The evening included a demonstration of rare 1970s and early 80s synthesizers and other electronic music equipment, including an EMS Synthi AKS, Roland TR-808, Roland Jupiter 4, Korg Mono-Poly, Roland MC202 and more. This gear was especially loaned to SAE Institute by collectors and electronic music artists throughout Melbourne for the night. Synthposium was not a trade show, so there were no new synthesizers on the premises!

Revisit the 2015 Synthposium!

Les Craythorn is a Tonmeister and former Senior Technical Officer at Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. He has recently restored to working order one of the world’s rarest synthesizers, the EMS Synthi 100, now housed at the VCA.

Andrew Duffield was a leading figure in Melbourne’s late 70s post-punk scene, playing synthesizer in legendary bands Whirlywirld and the Models, for whom he wrote some of their biggest hits. Since then he has pursued a successful career composing for advertising and film.

David Carbone cut his synthesizer teeth in Melbourne’s techno scene of the 1990s with Future Sound of Melbourne, later working with artists such as Carl Cox. He now runs School of Synthesis and production company s:amplify with Josh Abrahams. Shortly he will release his first synth plugin Carbon Electra.

Shags Chamberlain is an LA-based synth session player originally hailing from Melbourne. He has played on countless sessions in Melbourne’s underground indie-rock scene, including for Sophie Brous, Pikelet, Lost Animal and Laurence Pike.

Hands on with the synths: big synth party

hovering over synths

crowding around synths

Trying out the EMS AKS:pointing at EMS

Listening to the speakers: audience

The ultra-rare Soviet synth – the Novichok:Novichok