Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 28, 2012.

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Circuit Bender's Ball Columbus is a festival featuring experimental and aleatoric musical performances and circuit bending workshops.

What is Circuit Bending?

In a nutshell, it is the modification of battery-powered toys' circuitry in order to create a panoply of crazy sounds: bleeps, buzzes, crackles, squawks, and blips. And one of the things that makes it so cool is that you don't need a lot of technical know-how to get started. All you need, really, is curiosity, a screwdriver, and a willingness to experiment and play.

What is the Circuit Benders' Ball Columbus?

The Circuit Benders' Ball Columbus is a one-day event that celebrates the gentle art of tearing apart your electronic toys and gadgets and reconfiguring them into a musical instrument or artwork - i.e. break it to make it. Our inspirations are the Bent Festival in Brooklyn, NY and Circuit Benders' Ball Nashville.

We have invited benders/hardware hackers/sound artists from Ohio and other parts of the mid-west to perform with their circuit bent instruments and lead workshops covering a range of topics pertaining to circuit bending. The workshops, which will take place in the afternoon, range from intro level to advanced and are open to all ages. In the evening, experimental musicians and sound artists will perform with circuit bent instruments, custom-made electronics, and/or battery-powered electronic devices; genres will range from ambient soundscapes to aleatoric noise to EDM influenced grooves.

So: if you are into (or merely curious about) experimental music, electronics, handmade electronic art, DIY, hacking, and sonic mayhem, this event is for you!

The all-day event will take place on March 31 2012 at the Columbus Idea Foundry, a 10,000 square foot workshop, educational center, hackerspace superieur, artists' community and business incubator. They have been a fantastic partner with the Fuse Factory for several years now, so if you support this project, you are supporting CIF too.

Participating Performers and Instructors

  • Hardon Collider (aka Brendan Muccillo) - Cincy
  • Michael Una - Chicago
  • Mike Hancock - Cincy
  • Ring Toss Twins (aka John Dinger and Nick Heimer) - MN
  • Talking Computron (aka Alex Deeba) - MN
  • Thriftsore Boratorium (aka 1/2 Mang and thejunkyardcatalyst)
  • Space Gun Bunny (aka Mark Hoffman) - IN

Workshop topics (additional topics to be announced)

  • Make a LoFi Delay module (taught by Alex Dyba)
  • Build a Two Transistor Light Theramin (taught by Alex Dyba)
  • Bend a Voice Recorder Circuit (taught by Mark Hoffman)

All donations will go toward artist and instructor compensation, travel expenses for the out-of-towners, and workshop materials. Any funds we receive over our goal will go toward bringing in additional performers and instructors - so please feel free to help us make our first circuit bending festival event bigger and better than we envisioned!

Who is Trying to Pull this Off, Anyway?

The Fuse Factory is an art and technology initiative focused on cultivating artistic production, research, and experimentation with digital media and electronic tools. Our purpose is to function as an incubator for innovation, interaction, collaboration, critical thought, diversity, and artistic exploration. Our programs include Ignition, our annual juried exhibition; Frequency Fridays, a monthly performance series featuring visual and sound artists, musicians, makers, and technologists whose experimental work with diverse media investigates the migration of computing out of the desktop PC and into the physical world; and our mobile lab, our educational program that allows us to share our passion for art and technology with adults and children throughout the central Ohio region.

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- (30 days)