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Motorizing a Bb clarinet

Not enough fingers to play clarinet? With this project you can delegate solenoids to push two side-keys. Awkward fingerings whaaat?

I am a quite amateurish clarinetist myself but I always liked to experiment with my instrument. Within this project I managed to add two robotic fingers which push two of the side-keys of the clarinet. Those keys are traditionally used for trills and for multiphonics, but their usage distracts the right hand of the performer from its common position. By robotizing the side-keys, they can be opened and closed while the right hand is free to operate on the lower half of the clarinet. After building the whole thing I wrote a piece for Natalie Eriksson.

Apart from that, motorized keys can provide extreme precision in time (allowing for polyrhythmic play with the two human hands) and extreme speeds, impossible for a human being to achieve.

I used as a DAW environment. To the music score to be read by the clarinetist I synced a MIDI file (containing note events that control the solenoids) as well as the live electronic processes (filters, reverb and delays).”

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