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Invent an Instrument: Play, Learn, Teach

Molly McLaughlin

Kids love making noise, but what if we could help them learn while they’re at it?

That’s the idea behind musician and artist Dylan Martorell’s latest project, as part of Hotel Hotel’s Fix and Make series. He will be teaching two workshops on April 30 where the kids will make an instrument and sound installation out of found materials.

“We’ll be starting from scratch so basically the kids will be learning how to set up an installation with me,” Dylan explains. “We’re going to use a couple of different methods incorporating recycled materials and technology like percussive robotics and touch based sensors that will trigger samples and percussive sounds from found objects.”

Dyan Marotell

Dyan Martorell

Dylan’s recent work in Thailand, India, Taiwan, Indonesia, Singapore and Australia has explored concepts of transience, portability and sustainability, and his practise incorporates aspects of both sound and music.

“I’ve been exhibiting as an artist and performing as a musician for quite a while, and my two disciplines have joined in the middle now so a lot of my artwork combines with music and my music practise looks like a visual art exhibition,” he says. “I do a lot of large scale interactive installations. I’m very interested in incorporating DIY advances in electronics with up cycling and recycling.”

Sustainability should be an indispensable part of our lives however it is rarely the main concern, even in the creative arts. Dylan wants to influence the way kids think about visual art and music from the beginning.

“Sustainability is basically a very necessary state of mind for everyone in the world right now to use less and fix what we have,” he says. “So by transferring that across to an art practice it’s a methodology that you can show to kids without being too didactic.”

The workshops will be a casual and collaborative environment. Dylan has worked extensively with kids in the past and believes they bring a unique perspective to the project.

“I really enjoy working with kids,” Dylan says. “They are very enthusiastic and a lot of the time they’re teaching me stuff, because new technology is advancing so quickly and it’s also increasingly user friendly. It’s not just me telling them what to do, it’s us solving problems together.”

the essentials

What: Invent an Instrument kids workshop
When: Saturday 30 April from 9-10:30am (6-11 year olds) and 2-3pm (3-5 year olds) SOLD OUT.
Where: Hotel Hotel, 25 Edinburgh Avenue, NewActon
How much: $30 (6-11 year olds) /$20 (3-5 year olds)

Slider image of ‘girl to play…‘ via Shutterstock

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Molly McLaughlin

Molly McLaughlin is new to Canberra and is attempting to prove to her friends that the capital city can be cool. This mostly involves frequently going out for brunch and then posting about it on social media, along with trekking up hills and around art galleries. She is half way through her uni degree but spends most of her time reading, writing and planning her next adventure. More about the Author

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