interactive exhibit design
Our digital conducting experiences You're the Conductor and Virtual Maestro have been showcased across the United States and Europe at museums, music festivals, and concert halls. Virtual Maestro simulates the actions of conducting using a Wii-remote as a baton. Version 2.0 premiered at the Ravinia Music Festival near Chicago in Summer 2014. An earlier version of this system was presented at Ravinia in summer 2008:
The UBS Virtual Maestro kiosk toured many venues in the United States and Europe in 2007-2008, featuring technology powered by Immersion Music. Stops included Lincoln Center in New York, Boston's Symphony Hall, Chicago's Orchestra Hall, Philadelphia's Kimmel Center, and Disney Hall in Los Angeles. The kiosk also travelled to the Ravinia and Montreux Jazz Festivals. During its year-long tour, the Virtual Maestro kiosk brought the experience of conducting to more than 100,000 music enthusiasts and served as a platform for supplementary music learning experiences, including a large-scale conducting lesson held during the intermission of a Boston Symphony Orchestra kids' concert. Philadelphia Orchestra spokeswoman Katherine Blodgett was quoted by the Associated Press as saying that "the UBS Virtual Maestro seemed to be accomplishing its mission of sparking interest in classical music. During a weekend event for children, more than 100 lined up to try it out. You can have someone in their 70s. You can have children. I think it just goes to show that everyone wants to be a conductor."
Selected press reviews of Virtual Maestro:
The UK Guardian
WNYC Soundcheck interview
Minnesota Public Radio feature
USA Today feature article, "Conductor Hero"
Boston Channel Television segment "Local Students Lead Virtual Orchestra"
Chris Muir's blog quoting the AP
You're the Conductor was an interactive installation built in 2003 for the Boston Children's Museum in collaboration with Professor Jan Borchers of RWTH Aachen. This exhibit, which toured nationally and resided at the museum through 2008, allowed museumgoers to 'conduct' a video of the Boston Pops Orchestra with an infrared baton. The technology inside was powered by Immersion Music, with sponsors National Instruments and Hamamatsu. For more information, see:
Symkus, E. Children's Museum provides a music intro: New exhibit gives kids the chance to conduct the Boston Pops. Town Online (Herald Media Boston), June 25, 2003.
Edgers, G. Children's Museum, BSO create $2 million music exhibit. The Boston Globe, June 27, 2003.
Feinberg, J.. In Tune: Boston Symphony reaches out to children. The Patriot Ledger, June 28, 2003.
Deahl, A. Striking a chord with kids. The Boston Globe, June 2003.