photo: Ben Filio
photo: Ben Filio

Robots playing classical music

CreatION Sound from IonSound Project combines contemporary classical music with robotics for primary and middle school students.  IonSound Project musicians collaborate with local composers, roboticists, and students to synthesize technology and music, culminating in school presentations and concerts incorporating robots that interact with and respond to sound.

Teaming up with local educators, students, composers, and roboticists, IonSound Project presents their latest collaboration designed to enrich Pittsburgh’s cultural landscape and modernize technology education: CreatION Sound.

CreatION Sound began with a public concert in October 2012 featuring an original contemporary classical composition by Patrick Burke and a robot drum set constructed by Pittsburgh roboticist Jeremy Boyle. Beginning in November 2012, members of IonSound Project held a series of workshops for first-graders at the Falk Technology School and sixth- and seventh-graders at the Waldorf School of Pittsburgh.

IonSOund Project members developed content for the workshops in collaboration with Dr. Laura Tomokiyo, curriculum director at the Falk School, and Waldorf School teachers Anne Clair Goodman and Paige Wiegman.The workshops focus on expanding the students’ concept of technology to include traditional instruments, shifting technology education from a user-oriented perspective to a creator-oriented one, and teaching children about how instruments create sound. Over the course of the workshops students build their own instruments, starting with household items like rubber bands and nails, and eventually incorporating high tech elements such as sensors and motors.

CreatION Sound culminates in a second public concert in March 2013, featuring an original contemporary classical composition by Phillip Thompson and a kinetic fabric sculpture by local roboticist Garth Zeglin. At the March concert, the students from the Falk and Waldorf schools will take the stage with the instruments they created and play alongside the members of IonSound Project themselves.

CreatION Sound was last modified: October 18th, 2013 by Matt Hannigan