Anyone Can Improvise

National Museum for African American Music, Nashville

Anyone Can Improvise is a touch-interactive table in the Jazz gallery at the National Museum for African American Music in Nashville, that teaches visitors what it means to improvise— from guiding them through their first notes to letting them produce a recording while playing along with a full band.

The exhibit consists of a horizontal touchscreen display split into two stations, each with its own set of headphones.

The animations are written in C++ using OpenFrameworks. The visitor's instrument audio is generated by a background instance of Ableton Live which receives midi commands from OpenFrameworks via the loopMidi midi piping software.

I was responsible for the software specification and development from design through installation. This included the creation of the audio and visual systems, including a custom audio-synchronized framework for the visualization of each instrument in the band, the controlling of midi communications to Ableton Live, and the use of FFmpeg for recording video. The visual design was implemented by Ze Tan and the UX was designed by Valentina Camacho.

IMAGE CREDITS: <1.png> → SEGD <> | <3.png> → NBC News <> | <4.gif> → Ze Tan <>