interactive music worlds for the festival theater baden-baden

The Sigmund Kiener Foundation recently opened the kid's music world "Toccarion" in the famous Festspielhaus Baden-Baden. In this memorable location children can playfully discover the world of sound without any prior musical knowledge. The core of the permanent exhibit is an interactive forty square-meter installation contributed by ›vertigo systems‹. Through this installation and the specifically developed themed games, children become part of a virtual orchestra and experience music in a very intuitive way.

By using new interactive technologies, visitors between five and twelve years of age may for example actively experience the role of a conductor. Here, a forty musicians strong virtual orchestra will follow each movement of the baton on a huge wall-projection. Accessing associated active fields on the floor, will mean to acoustically and visually fade in and out entire vocal groups. In this installation, the junior conductors will not only master a virtual orchestra and actively learn basics about tact and rhythm, but also get to know Bizet, Strauss and Beethoven.

Through the audio quiz, ›vertigo systems‹ enables considerate multimedia-based organology. First, the kids hear the melody of an orchestral part. Then, they will assign it to the respective instrument. A selection of instruments is projected on the floor. Four professional projectors are used to project the visual selection of the instruments directly and seamlessly on the floor. Camera sensors are watching the kids guess. After revealing whether the kids have made the correct choice, the orchestra will appear again on the double XL-sized projection wall and will replay the pieces written by Brahms or Strauss from the respective instrumental perspective.

In another game, the children can assemble notes for well known pieces of music on the 6x4 meter floor-projection that behaves like a walkable giant touch screen. The goal is to provide a waiting virtual musical quartet with the previously missing sheets of music. On success, the kids will then discover the string quartet in a different virtual environment depending on the performed play's theme. Another interactive gaming situation is kept purely intuitive. The children hunt virtual notes on the floor-surface and will make them explode. After that, the notes will re-materialize on a wall animation.

These interactive installations by ›vertigo systems‹ allow children to playfully get in touch with music and to fully immerse into the action. The gaming worlds for the interactive orchestra of the kid's music world "Toccarion" were developed in cooperation with the festival theater Baden-Baden. ›vertigo systems‹ was responsible for the production and installation of this interactive media project. The media designer Maika Paetzold realised the rich design work and was responsible for the visual concepts. Camera sensor technology, multiprojector setup and complex programming are based on an extended edition of vertigo system's software package ›living surface‹.

The lovingly restoration and renovation of the premises and the realization of the permanent exhibit "Toccarion" were initiated and supported by the Sigmund Kiener Foundation. The kid's music world "Toccarion" was opened in 2013 by the world-famous opera singers Anna Netrebko and Erwin Schrott.

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