Acclaimed musician Jo Hamilton recently became the second person – after the inventor – to play a prototype of an AirPiano during an event at the Apple Store on London’s Regent St. Likened to a “perfectly imagine symbiosis of kd lang fronting Sigur Ros”, Hamilton received classical training in the viola prior to recording her debut album, Gown, which was released in June.
Among her musical arsenal is the only prototype of an AirPiano in use anywhere in the world outside the laboratory. The new innovation allows the user to play and control software instruments on an attached computer simply by moving their hands in the air above it.
Designed by Omer Yosha, the patent applied invention employs an array of sensors to create a virtual matrix of keys and faders in the air above it. Each of the eight sensors can provide three keys or, alternatively, one vertical control fader, while LED feedback confirms user actions and assures easy interaction and control. Custom software allows creative MIDI mapping as well as the assignment of OSC (Open Sound Control) messages.
A clip of Jo explaining and playing the instrument can be found at: www.youtube.com/user/johamiltongown#p/a/u/1/aq3BqV36Ves&fmt=22