Last night at the Science Museum lates, Lottolab took the art-science collaboration a step further than they’ve tried before. The star attraction was the soundwall, a 77-speaker array on which a composer could control the positions of instruments.
Eduardo Miranda composed a piece for a string octet, which was played live and piped directly to the soundwall where it was mixed to create a soundscape. Some parts worked better than others, but at its best, the effect was mind-bendingly cool.
It was really interesting to be able to move from the sometimes confronting soundscape of the soundwall to the much more classic setting of the live string octet. The music, Waggle Dance, was composed by Eduardo in what sounds almost like a human-technology collaboration too. While the experience was enjoyable, it also made me reflect on the amazing hearing system we have – the ability to pick up direction and make sense of individual sound signals in a noisy environment, using essentially only two inputs!
The fisheye shot above is from a time-lapse of the night; you might get to see it soon!