The Wege House, on the shores of Northern Lake Michigan, is a collaboration between architect David Hanawalt and “sonic installation artist,” Bill Close. Within the house are “musical experiences,” in which the living spaces act as structure, bridge and resonator for giant stringed instruments. Visitors are literally standing inside an instrument as it is played, with the sound resonating through the entire house. The architectural-scale instruments, which are all string-based, are made possible by Bill Close, who developed long string technologies consisting of custom made brass wire and piano wire. However, don’t think of just walking in and strumming the house. (That’s a sentence I never thought I’d say) These strings aren’t for amateurs. To play the house, “first a player puts on a cotton glove that has rosin powder on the fingers… Two fingers lightly pinch the string and run along. This action creates a compression wave within the material of the string. The fingers push the vibration along in a similar manner that one might create tone by running their finger around the edge of a glass. The action produces tones akin to cello or viola.”
I’m just waiting for someone to get stoned and try to play “Freebird” on this thing.
For more information, including sound samples played in/on the house, visit The Symphonic House website