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Oramics To Electronica

The Oramics Machine is being installed in the gallery today in preparation for tomorrow's big opening...

You may remember back in May we were looking for musicians to help us create an exhibition focusing on Daphne Oram’s Oramics Machine. Well, this Friday the first phase of the exhibition will be opening.

You will be able to see the original Oramics Machine – a unique synthesizer – invented in the1960s by Daphne Oram – who established the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. This extraordinary device, long thought lost, is groundbreaking in the history of electronic music.

Tim Boon, our Chief Curator, said: “The new exhibition is all about the birth of electronic music and its many influences on today’s music scene and we’re so pleased to be able to showcase the amazing Oramics Machine at the Science Museum – few people have been able to see it since the 1980s and this is a great opportunity. Our new interactive also allows you to recreate the sound of the Oramics Machine – so you can compose and arrange your own music.”

Mick Grierson, Director of the Daphne Oram Collection, Goldsmiths, University of London, said: “The Oramics Machine is a device of great importance to the development of British electronic music. It’s a great shame that Daphne’s contribution has never been fully recognised, but now that we have the machine at the Science Museum, it’s clear for all to see that she knew exactly how music was going to be made in the future, and created the machine to do it.”

A new iPhone app called ‘Oramics’, has also been developed by Goldsmiths, University of London, to recreate the sound of the Oramics Machine. You can see a video of this in action below:

Earlier this morning there was a ripple of excitement and anticipation in the Museum as a team of conservationists bought the machine from its storage place in Blythe House. Our co-creators and curators looked on as this one-of-a-kind machine was placed into its case on gallery.

The Oramics Machine being Installed

On 10 October, a second stage of the exhibition will open, which will showcase an array of electronic music and sound reproduction equipment. It will be co-created by a range of individuals working with electronic music today. The Museum is also working together with employees of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and Electronic Music Studio (EMS), who produced the first commercial British synthesizer: VCS3.

You can follow phase two of the exhibition on the dedicated Oramics Facebook Page or follow us on Twitter.

2 comments on “Oramics To Electronica

  1. Very interesting. I looked for “oramics” for the iPhone, but I couldn’t find it.

    “a team of conservationists bought the machine from its storage place in Blythe House.” I hope they kept the receipt.

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