How the future sounds – youth tech project is the new MyNormal

From turning bananas into pianos to singing without a voice, the MyNormal: Accessible Instructments project launching this August is sure to be Off The Scale! Science Oxford is delighted to team up with partners OYAP Trust in Bicester and Ark-T Centre in Oxford to support ‘MyNormal‘ – a successful Youth Music funded project led by Ark-T, which aims to empower young people with disabilities from Oxfordshire.

A “hackathon” style series of workshops will take place in at OYAP in Bicester, where young people aged 13-25 will develop ideas to create musical instruments that are accessible to Every Body, and build them using basic code. The final creations will be shown at ROAR Disability Arts Festival on August 31st 2018 11am-12pm, at the Ark T Centre in Oxford. There will also be a showcase event in October at ‘IF‘ – Oxford’s Science and Ideas Festival. Science Oxford will provide cutting-edge tech and coding equipment for these sessions, including Micro:bits, Makey makey, robots, laptops, wearable tech devices, plus the use of our 3D printer and lasercutter machines at Make Oxford, a creative work space at OCFI with protyping and making facilities for science and tech businesses, entrepreneurs and professional makers.

Budding music technologists will learn how to code musical notes and how to play them – by tilting, spinning, shaking or touching the buttons on the Micro:bit. Using these new skills they will design and make moveable wearable musical tech that can be controlled with your own body.

Project leader Noelle Aly, Projects Technology Officer and Maker at Science Oxford, will be offering her expertise and skills alongside Hannah Bruce, Youth Music Project Manager at the Ark T Centre.

Noelle said, “We are an engineer and a musician who have come together to give a voice to those under-represented in the music industry. We are both passionate about giving individuals with disabilities high quality music and technology opportunities and showcasing how new tech can create exciting ideas and advances for the future.

We were inspired by Imogen Heap’s mi.mu gloves and hope to empower individuals to interact with music in ways they’ve never done before. The project is challenging how we define ourselves and others. This is the first experience of programming for many of the young participants.”

Workshops 1-5PM for ages 11-19: Thursdays 1-5pm on the 16th, 23rd and 30th August at OYAP Trust, Cemetery Road Bicester OX26 6BB.
The workshops are free (suggested donation £5) and refreshments will be provided.
Keep your finger on the pulse and book and register your interest for the MyNormal Accessible Instruments Hackathon now with music@ark-t.org 

Roar Festival runs on the 31st August and 1st September (10am – 4pm). The Hackathon presentation is on the 31st August 11am – 12pm at Ark T Centre, Crowell Road, Oxford OX4 3LN http://www.ark-t.org

Science Oxford’s popular Saturday Science Clubs for 5-9 year olds are also launching at OYAP, Bicester this autumn.