Motion Tracking Glove Brings Musical Innovation
Motion tracking technology has revolutionized violin playing for one adept performer. NY1’s Adam Balkin filed the following report.
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Mari Kimura plays the violin by herself, but also with herself. Warming up for a performance sponsored by the Vilcek Foundation, the violinist and composer says thanks to motion tracking sensors in the glove on her bow hand, and software she designed and wrote herself, she's able to accompany herself and more.
“It detects the kind of the motion I'm making on the bow or the big actions like pizzicato,” says Kimura. “It's very easy for the sensors to know, so I can assign to do anything. I can assign to turn the graphics on or I can clone myself, and the funny part is when you start cloning yourself you get affected by it, so you don't know who you are anymore. So, that's the kind of musicality I like to explore.”
If Kimura does decide to use digital accompaniment like a piano, it will keep pace with her. In other words, it will speed up or slow down based on what the gloved hand is doing.
Moving forward, Kimura hopes to incorporate the technology into duets.
“So, we are going to be affecting each other, so the piece is called ‘Duet Times Two,’” says Kimura. “So, I have a duet times two people hanging around or between us who are affecting each other and make us listen to each other’s sounds in a never existed before way. So, that's what I want to explore.”