Ten things to know about SOUND CHECK

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SOUND CHECK is one of Science Gallery Dublin’s most interactive exhibitions to date — and in this guest blog, intern Grace Dunleavy takes you through a few interesting things to know about it.   

1: Make your own instruments

Did you know you can make your own music at our NOISE STUDIO? Become part of the many different noises here at Science Gallery Dublin and have a go at making your very own instrument. With mediators on hand to help, you can become a musician in minutes.


2. On your bike...

BIKES FOR HIRE! Get out and about on the streets of Dublin with “sonic” bikes and Ya slip ta bang, a newly commissioned audio piece by artists Kaffe Matthews. Location-sensitive software mounted on the bikes lets you experience unique sounds, music tracks and spoken-word passages from Irish author Mia Gallagher’s book HellfFre, depending on your whereabouts in the city. Take a sonic bike out for an hour’s ride to hear Ya Slip Ta Bang play through the streets of Dublin as you go. To book online, click here

3. Swing your way to musical experimentation

We’ve got swings! Baloica makes music as you swing. Motion sensors capture your movements as you rock back and forth, resulting in different sounds. With three swings available, why not form a trio and compose your own unique ensemble. Swing on in and check them out!

4. A new way to play

Can playing a game ever be the same as playing an instrument? Star Struck seeks to explore whether there has to be a difference between the two, by tapping into the musical potential of pinball. The playfield is enclosed by bass guitars, and with space for up to four players to take part, an interesting musical composition is guaranteed. 

5. Music anywhere (and everywhere)

Nearly anything, anywhere can be become a musical instrument with the help of Mogees — tiny sensors that can transform your dinner table into an orchestra. Use chopsticks or hands to tap away at the various objects on the table at the Mogees exhibit (pictured above), and the vibrations you create are captured and translated in real time into sound and music. Generate different sounds by changing up the impact, strength, speed, timbre and length of your tap. 

6. Remix your way through our tape collection

Challenging the usual digital perception of remixing, Press Play to Play lets you make your own music by using cassette tapes. With seven tape decks on hand and plenty of different cassettes featuring unusual and alternative genres, tracks and speech clips, you'll be composing your own unique theme in no time — just by pressing play and pause.

7. Wearable music

Mi-mu gloves are a transformational new way to compose and perform music. They track the movement of your hands and fingers to bring technology that rarely leaves the confines of a studio to the stage in an accessible way. 

8. Challenging stereotypes

Shoes can sound great, as well as looking great. Transforming the traditional purpose of shoes into wearable musical instruments, Computer-enhanced footwear by Alex Murray-Leslie of Chicks On Speedit raises the question: why are many musical instruments made for the hands, and not the feet? 

9. Live music in the Moog Sound Lab 

Science Gallery Dublin’s first musician-in-residence series, a collaboration with the National Concert Hall, will take place throughout the summer in the Moog Sound Lab. Click here for a list of the performers who'll be joining us in one of the exhibtion's most popular attractions. 

10. Get involved! 

Speaking of special events, we're got a range of music workshops, talks, screenings and scratch orchestras lined up for you to check out during the duration of SOUND CHECKclick here for a full list, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram for the lastest updates. Now get out there and make some noise!

Grace Dunleavy is a science communicator and intern at Science Gallery Dublin.