Romklang is a prototype for automated soundsetting of a social room with audience interaction through modified objects and iPod / iPad. In this case the place is a restaurant where the sound gently pours out of several speakers in the room.
The sound is newly composed instrumental music with variations in melodic and rhythmic structures. At the same time there are sounds of nature, animals and manmade sounds, such as urban sounds (eg. churches / train stations), in-room sounds (eg. from restaurants), the sounds of cooking and dining, sports and games.
The sound in its entirety can be controlled through the staff’s main screen (an iPad). They have primary control over the overall sound and the overall framework. Here the relationship between music and field recordings, material equality, mood-fields, etc. are governed through the touch screen. Staff can also commit changes based on time of day, menu, special events, weather, time of year, etc.
The restaurant’s customer manages a part of the sound by twisting and turning objects similar to those usually found on a restaurant table; pepper grinders, salt shakers and oil bottles, etc. These objects act as simple, electronic instruments, modified and wirelessly connected to the “brain”. In addition, there are a number of small screens (iPod) that let the audience know what they can do with the objects, let them answer questions about how they want the music, give them the ability to communicate with others in the room, etc. You can send short messages to each other: “Turn the pepper grinder!” “A little more salt?” or “Table 23 did not like what you did with the pepper grinder!”
The installation is part of Ultima 10, Oslo Contemporary Music Festival, and is supported by the Municipality of Bergen and Arts Council Norway.
In addition to Jørgen Larsson, Roar Sletteland has contributed to the object modification.