Laptop computers have become such an essential part of our lives that it’s almost become odd to consider doing things like paying bills or buying a book without one.
But conducting an orchestra?
That’s the premise behind LORKAS, a student-run experimental “laptop orchestra” at Arizona State University that’s bridging the gap between the worlds of computer programming and performance art.
“We come from a wide swath of people. While I wouldn’t use the word ‘misfit-y,’ I definitely can say we’re a weird bunch,” said Althea Pergakis, a digital culture major in the School of Arts, Media and EngineeringThe School of Arts, Media and Engineering is a collaborative initiative between the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts and the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering., who is also the co-director of LORKAS.
The ensemble, which is comprised of 10 core members, includes instrumentalists, programmers, composers, audio engineers, designers, singers and fabrication specialists. As a whole, it’s encouraging creative expression with technology and the arts.
“Half the people are into digital media while the other half are coming from the School of MusicThe School of Music is part of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.. We are all looking for something new, weird and different,” Pergakis said. “Essentially, LORKAS is a sandbox that allows us to go to a special place and explore.”