By Jennifer Hummke
On Thursday, April 16th, the MacArthur Foundation is bringing an innovative ensemble of laptop musicians — the Princeton Laptop Orchestra — to Chicago to perform at the Newberry Library (performance starts at 6:30 p.m.)
Seven laptopists will be performing — each with a laptop and custom designed hemispherical speaker that emulates the way traditional orchestral instruments cast their sound in space. Wireless networking and video augment the role of the conductor. Here is a link to information about the event. There will also be a demonstration at which the public can interact wit the instruments — this will be at the Palmer House Hilton in the Loop from 1:30-4p.m on Friday.
Founded in 2005, this new ensemble is the first and size of its kind. It is part of a project at Princeton University that is exploring ways in which the computer can be integrated into conventional music-making. It received funding from MacArthur through its digital media and learning competition, which supports innovative uses of digital media for learning.