Pots and pans, balloons, a ping pong and a paddle, and the creative power of the mind. Sometimes we get caught up in the restrictions of our conventional instruments and forget about the most diverse and powerful instrument of them all – your imagination. On Tuesday, the Unconventional Instrument Night was held by Musicians at Ryerson to help wipe the rust off and create some truly original music.
The event started at 6:30 p.m. in the Student Services Centre, in room 115, a gigantic open space with the perfect room acoustics for this event. Set on a table in the corner were an array of objects that one would probably assume to be for something like a musical cooking party. Cheese graters, knives, shakers, an assortment of pots and spoons, and a whole lot of balloons were scattered all over the floor.
At first glance these objects don’t seem to have any musical potential, but in the hands of the Musicians at Ryerson and the guests who attended, these seemingly normal objects were transformed and functioned, arguably, like real instruments.
Perhaps as you would walk by, you would hear the sound of a cup hitting the bottom of a kitchen pot, or the subtle bouncy, ripply noise of a paddle banging on a balloon, these were the instruments that came to form by letting their minds run free, and the ending result was nothing short of amazing.
First, someone would start with a simple beat or perhaps even a chant with their voice, and slowly others would join and contribute their own beats and snaps. Eventually, when the small, but intimate group of 8 had all joined in, what transpired was an amazing, eclectic orchestra of sound. To switch it up they would even start with a popular song and slowly put their own spin on it, moving it into all sorts of directions, going with the flow. The snapping of belts, the stomping of pots, and even the popping of balloons really created something unique. I was the one popping the balloons.
It was an amazing experience that really opened me up to rediscovering what music is and what can be done with it. It’s also quite magical how making music together can really quickly turn strangers into friends. This event really taught me to never underestimate the power of music. In the midst of final assignments and other stresses that come along with the end of second-year university, strangely, this was a great way to relax! Keep on rockin’ it Musicians at Ryerson! Thanks for the awesome night!