travis weller
composer / performer
the owl
steel bells & chimes
free improvisation
imbroglio string quartet
gates ensemble
new music co-op
film/theatre soundtracks
studio sessions

Instrument Building: The Owl

The Owl is a stringed instrument designed by Travis Weller. It features moveable bridges which allow a number of different tunings, including those in the system known as Just Intonation. It owes much to rudimentary piano technology and particularly, the Prepared Piano. It uses 16 high tension music wire strings with wooden and brass bridges and a resonant soundboard all anchored to a welded steel frame. Because the strings are easily accessible to direct manipulation, it can be bowed, plucked, hammered, and scraped in a variety of ways resulting in a limitless array of tonal colors.

It is sometimes used in conjunction with custom software created with the SuperCollider framework and custom sensor interfaces created with the help of STEIM in the Netherlands.

It's first performance was at the New Music Co-op electrons and phonons presentation in late 2006. More info at work.

This instrument building and custom software project could not have been possible without help and inspiration from metal artist Brian Frisbee, carpenter Kirk Laktas, Plum Piano technicians, composer Arnold Dreyblatt, mathematician Joel Griffith, STEIM foundation in the Netherlands, and friends/colleagues Holland Hopson, & Alex Keller.

This site and its contents copyright © 2004-2019 Travis Weller