Premiered at Nuit Blanche in Toronto. Over 3,000 viewers called in to re-arrange the musicians and the song!
Jordan Bimm, NOW Magazine:
Geoffrey Shea takes on digital billboards with his interactive music projection piece TRIO. Revellers will be confronted by large projections of three folk musicians jamming, while corresponding audio tracks mix together to create a song. Viewers can dial a number on their mobile devices to change musicians in the trio – there’s a pool of nine, each with a different instrument – and create a new audio mix in the process.
Shea says he chose to showcase folk music because of its politics of participation and inclusion. “Folk was started by people who felt like they had something to say, who wanted to get involved. As a genre, it puts less emphasis on technique, and makes music more accessible.”
While it might seem contradictory to link folk music and high technology, Shea explains that the connection is all about art and democracy. “Everyone is getting creative with digital media these days, so I see media art as the new folk art.”
Shea hopes that groups of people dialing in to create the perfect trio onscreen will be drawn into a conversation about advertising, individual agency and mobile devices.
“We’re increasingly surrounded by large public screens, and I’m hoping that not all of these will be advertising. People should have access to them, be able to play with them and inject their own content. I want people to leave feeling empowered, and that they might want to try something like this on their own.”