Academic Work – Swing

Swing Swing Swing!
Design for graduate studies

In this conceptual project I designed an exhibit about music of the Swing Era. It was intended to be installed in a 48′ trailer that would travel the country to teach 12-14 year olds about the rich social history of big band music.

The design concept transports the visitor to the night of January 16, 1938, that would be a crucial turning point in music history. Early in the evening, Benny Goodman performed the first jazz concert in Carnegie Hall, a venue that until then only showcased classical music. Following this legendary concert, band members raced uptown to Harlem’s Savoy Ballroom for the Battle of Swing between the house band of Chick Webb, with singer Ella Fitzgerald and Count Basie, with singer Billie Holiday.

Visitors begin their exhibition with a journey in a virtual train car on the 6th avenue elevated traveling to Carnegie Hall. Subsequent spaces and interactive devices immerse them in the story and music of Carnegie Hall and concludes with swing dance lesson in the Savoy Ballroom using existing interactive technology. A panel on the side of the truck can also be opened to create a stage for musical performances.

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