ACO exhibition to transform TRAG to a virtual concert hall

Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery in July will resemble a virtual concert hall in an immersive and interactive exhibition that will allow visitors to experience waving a baton to conduct one of Australia’s leading orchestras.

Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery in July will resemble a virtual concert hall in an immersive and interactive exhibition that will allow visitors to experience waving a baton to conduct one of Australia’s leading orchestras.

TRAG’s Gallery One will be transformed via a cutting edge audio-visual installation, ACO Virtual, featuring the Australian Chamber Orchestra.

Toowoomba Regional Council Library and Cultural Services portfolio leader Cr Joe Ramia said Council, in conjunction with the Empire Theatres, was delighted to host ACO Virtual from July 1-30.

Cr Ramia said the touring exhibition was a collaboration between the ACO and Mod Productions, a Sydney digital media company.

“Anyone who has dreamed about conducting an orchestra or appearing as a leading ensemble musician will have a unique opportunity to experience the next best thing at the Gallery in July,” Cr Ramia said.

“This is a fascinating blend of art forms and technology that will provide an exhilarating and fully immersive experience that’s the next best thing to appearing on a concert stage.”

The ground-breaking exhibition fuses digital technologies with visual and sonic innovation that allows visitors to conduct and play with the ACO.

aco2jpgACO Virtual features projections of 13 of the ACO’s acclaimed musicians. Audiences are surrounded, with the sound of each musician coming from the direction of their individual projections.

A touch-screen music stand allows patrons to spotlight and listen to one musician, a section of instruments or a chosen selection of players.

Visitors will step inside a concert and be immersed in a cinematic experience, surrounded by the musicians and manipulating what they hear and see.

The musical score can be turned on to stream along the bottom of the screen, meaning anyone who plays an instrument can play along with the ACO, even standing in for Artistic Director Richard Tognetti.

A smartphone app further enriches the experience with information about the music, the ACO musicians and their instruments.

The work runs for 30 minutes in a loop and comprises carefully selected music by Bach, Grieg, Smalley and Piazzolla, designed to maximise the chance for audience participation.

It delivers a unique and inspiring learning environment, giving residents the opportunity to engage with, and learn from, world-class musicians.

Visit the Gallery after hours for a Twilight Tour of the exhibition on Thursday, July 20 at 5.30pm. This event is free and all are welcome.

School groups and tours are also welcome. Contact the Gallery for details on 4688 6652 or email art@tr.qld.gov.au 

Gallery hours: 10am – 4pm Tuesday to Saturday; 1 to 4pm Sunday / Closed Mondays and public holidays.

ACO Virtual was produced by the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Mod Productions.

Michela Ledwidge, Artist and Director

Richard Tognetti, ACO Artistic Director

Mish Sparks, Executive Producer

Cristina Dio, Producer

Simon Lear, Sound Designer BSound

Proudly supported by Empire Theatres

Images: ACO Virtual / Photograph: Jack Saltmiras

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