Played by touching an octagonal surface connected to two light towers, the nomis creates sounds that can be used in repetition. When a part of the octagon is touched, it lights up and produces a note. Players can tap out a tune and then loop it by spinning the octagon around. See the full light and sound performance here. Jonathan Sparks' website
Imagine your 10-year-old coming home from school after band practice and begging you to let him play a… SculpTon? It doesn’t quite have the same ring as a saxophone, but the SculpTon may be one of the instruments of the very near future.
The upcoming Margaret Guthman Musical Instrument Competition features a number of creative — and slightly bizarre — musical instruments. The instruments will be judged by their tone and innovative design. Many of the instruments selected to compete have nontraditional sounds, and most use technology to enhance the way their instruments are played.
Now in its sixth year, the competition at the Georgia Institute of Technology has produced such instruments as the Adjustable Microtonal Guitar, the Electrumpet, and the Silent Drum. Twenty semi-finalists were chosen this week, with the final round of the competition scheduled for Feb. 19 and 20. Here are some of the innovative instruments that have made it this far.