L2OrkMote: Reimagining a Low-Cost Wearable Controller for a Live Gesture-Centric Music Performance

Tsoukalas, Kyriakos and Kubalak, Joseph and Bukvic, Ivica Ico

Proceedings of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression

Laptop orchestras create music, although digitally produced, in a collaborative live performance not unlike a traditional orchestra. The recent increase in interest and investment in this style of music creation has paved the way for novel methods for musicians to create and interact with music. To this end, a number of nontraditional instruments have been constructed that enable musicians to control sound production beyond pitch and volume, integrating filtering, musical effects, etc. Wii Remotes (WiiMotes) have seen heavy use in maker communities, including laptop orchestras, for their robust sensor array and low cost. The placement of sensors and the form factor of the device itself are suited for video games, not necessarily live music creation. In this paper, the authors present a new controller design, based on the WiiMote hardware platform, to address usability in gesture-centric music performance. Based on the pilot-study data, the new controller offers unrestricted two-hand gesture production, smaller footprint, and lower muscle strain.