Focus Area Four
Accessibility Innovation in the Arts (Part Three)
Accessible Music Performances
Music is made up of vibrations, also known as sound waves, that we can hear. It may be assumed that there is only one way to experience and enjoy music – by listening and hearing. But music also creates vibration which can be felt by touch throughout the entire body – the humming sound produced by the string on an upright bass, the boom of the drums and the vibration of the piano strings can echo through the body as another way to experience music (BBC, n.d.).
The BBC National Orchestra of Wales have designed concerts especially for an audience who cannot actually hear them. Children, young people and adults who are Deaf, deaf, deafened and hard of hearing are invited to experience a full symphony orchestra in Cardiff, Wales. People of all ages are invited to sit with musicians on stage where they can touch the instruments to feel the vibration and experience the sensation of music without being able to hear it (BBC, 2013).
Mahler Chamber Orchestra
From 2012 to 2015, the Berlin, Germany based Mahler Chamber Orchestraopen new window toured an award-winning outreach education workshop program called Feel the Music, which integrated the Orchestra with children who are deaf and hard of hearing. During Feel the Music workshops, children are invited to touch the instruments, sit under the piano, conduct the musicians and sense the sound of a drum or the vibrations of a cello with their entire body. (Mahler Chamber Orchestra, n.d.)
Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in Australia, musician Danny Laneopen new window and music educator Karen Kyriakouopen new window collaborated with students from the Victorian College for the Deaf on a series of music workshop designed to inspire music making. The experience of music doesn’t just come from listening to it as Danny Lane suggests, “for me it's more than that; it's about the experience of working with a group, interacting, sharing creative ideas, socialising” (Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, 2015).