Giant Theremin

The Giant Theremin


The Giant Theremin was commissioned by the City of Melbourne in 2011. It is a 7 metre tall interactive musical instrument that takes the amazing Theremin as it’s point of inspiration. Early in the process of researching this work I realised that building a large scale ‘real’ Theremin (where the performer is essentially the capacitor in a circuit), would be both dangerous and….monophonic. The brief for the work was that it could be played by groups of people. So obviously this is not a REAL theremin, but more a tribute to idea of remote agency and making music from the ether.

In the end I designed a camera tracking version that follows up to 8 people moving in front of the sculpture and allows them to play polyphonic music together. The project was a lot of fun and lead to some surprising public interactions ranging from Tai Chi groups gathering around it in the mornings to groups of young BMX’ers jumping in sonic loops off the face of the works. Below are some interviews and short media grabs from the premiere installation at Les Erdi Plaza Melbourne Nov 2011 – March 2012.

Listen to an interview on NPR in the states