I will be presenting a short paper as the CHI2014 conference in Toronto this April. Here's the abstract:
Percussionists are unique among western classical instrumentalists in that their artistic practice is defined by an approach to interaction rather than their instruments. While percussionists are accustomed to exploring non-traditional objects to create music, these objects have yet to encompass touch-screen computing devices to any great extent. The proliferation and popularity of these devices now presents an opportunity to explore their use in combining computer-generated sound together with percussive interaction in a musical ensemble.
This paper examines Ensemble Metatone, a group formed to explore the “infiltration” of iPad-based musical instruments into a free-improvisation percussion ensemble. We discuss the design approach for two different iPad percussion instruments and the methodology for exploring them with the group over a series of rehearsals and performances. Qualitative analysis of discussions throughout this process shows that the musicians developed a vocabulary of gestures and musical interactions to make musical sense of these new instruments.