While we’re on the subject of making music with Kinect, the 3D computer vision camera with depth-sensing, here are some other experiments into how music might work. As with the classic Theremin, those musical gestures tend to be mapped against two-dimensional axes in space.

And from there, things become wide open. Johannes Kreidler, a musician and artist known for irreverent and inventive experiments in music, shares his studies for the Kinect, which he terms “conceptual music.” A solo “for violin” can involve literally waving a violin around. “House music” can mean making music whilst ironing a shirt. Any gesture in space becomes musical. Without tangible feedback, that can be challenging, and since these are just gestures in air, precision and nuance may not be a strong suit. But it’s a fascinating look into what’s possible, a set of thought experiments in music with a camera.

Composer Johannes Kreidler’s other works have included provocative ideas like making a performance of a short piece with 70,200 quotations of other “sampled” works, tunes from wildly-gyrating stock market quotes, entire bodies of work (like the Beatles) compressed into seconds, and pieces from avant-garde happenings to more conventional electro-acoustic scores. See his site for more.

When Any Gesture Can Make Music: Conceptual Studies for Kinect

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