When the National Music Centre opens to the public later this year, people are going to be blown away. It’s a massive facility in downtown Calgary–160,000 square feet–that will put the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to shame.
One of the NMC’s original plans was to institute an Artist in Residence Program and now they’re ready to start taking applications. Those selected will have access to the NRC’s collection of historic instruments–there are pianos going back to the 1600s and all many of vintage synths!–for composing and recording purposes. For example, a successful AiR person will be able to mess with the actual ARP synth used to play the five notes to the aliens in Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
Another cool toy is the Rolling Stones Mobile Recording Unit, the truck used by the Stones to record Exile on Main Street, Led Zeppelin to make IV and unit cited by Deep Purple in “Smoke on the Water.”
Here’s a quote from the NMC:
The program is designed to feed and nurture artistic creativity and technical innovation by providing artists at various levels of professional development with uninterrupted time and space, and the use our unique collection and expertise, to create new and innovative works in a unique and supportive world-class facility.NMC’s vision is to become a national catalyst for discovery, innovation, and renewal through music.
Artists in Residence are provided with:
- A period of focused time to concentrate on personal artistic development and work towards their proposed project
- An opportunity to use, sample, and record unique instruments and equipment from the NMC Collection
- Access to performance spaces for community outreach and engagement
- Access to NMC Collections’ staff and their expertise
In total, there will be 300 musical artifacts and three historic recording consoles (Olympic Studios/London from the 70s!).
Like I said, this is gonna be cool.
Learn more about programming: