Featured Artist/Musician: Johnny Tal and a Musical Makey Makey Festival Experience

August 31, 2020
Johnny Tal recently shared this amazing project with us on our Makey Makey educator page. The video above includes all the activities in the interactive dream show called "Head in the Clouds" which was produced by Tal's partner Michal Svironi. (Note: This video is from a festival in Israel a few months ago.)
Johnny's section is called "The Rhythm Drops Orchestra" (This is a loose translation from Hebrew.) which he  made for a festival in Israel earlier this year.

Inside Johnny's tent, kids would come in and sit at their own cloud. Each cloud had five "rain" drops attached the kids could play the "rhythm drops" by touching rain drops. Johnny built his own program with JS for the musical instruments and sounds, which allowed him to change instruments live from his laptop during the festival.  The notes are in the pentatonic scale and each cloud has its own sound - kalimba, flute, xylophone, etc.

Each group that entered the tent consisted of six kids, who had about 15 minutes of guided activity. Johnny explained how to close a circuit by holding hands, play music on noses, how to listen to each person playing a solo and pay attention to the conductor when he points to a certain player of the orchestra. It's a pretty magical experience, kids came back often and really enjoyed playing the rhythm drops.

The full concept was developed by Michal Svironi and Johnny Tal. Johnny developed the software, designed the sound and conducted the orchestra, while Michal was in charge of the visual design, and Leonid Alisov is credited for sewing the clouds.
Make sure you check out this web app created by Johnny. He made it for anyone who wants to use their Makey as a musical instrument, in hope of simplifying this work and making it more flexible. You can easily upload any sound you want for any input, or choose an instrument from the list (all playing in pentatonic scale), monitor what's being triggered, and have it all synced to 120 bpm. 
We've included this amazing plug and play app on our "Apps for Plug and Play" page!

Update August 28th, 2020

This week Johnny Tal performed at Yehi'am Fortress & Zippori National Parks in Israel with "The Rhythm Drops Orchestra."  Kids and adults were invited to play the musical raindrops and help bring rain to the desert in the middle of August!
They are still using Makey Makey and this great app that Johnny developed which you can find here : http://ilyichgames.com/makey and on our  "Apps for Plug and Play!" 
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