Conductor's Remote
players.png ~4-7
time.png 5 min
props.png cue-deck × 0 inspire-deck × 0 dice × 0 -

A conductor sets gestures to control musical aspects such as dynamics and tempo of a small playing ensemble. Styles can be pre-set, or improvised. Lots of chaotic fun!

Set up

Playing this game requires one conductor and an ensemble of at least 3 players (one percussionist is advised). Try to pick a genre that the ensemble is capable of playing. The members should at least be able to perform organized rhythmic music. Before the game, players should agree on two grooves to be played. They can be within a certain genre, or completely improvised. These grooves should be comfortably repeatable.

You will need to agree on six different gestures which will be displayed to whole ensemble at once. Everyone should be able to recognize the gestures easily. You can use gestures that your ensemble is already familiar with. The conductor should demonstrate them before the game.

Action Example Gesture Info
Play Tap on your head Start playing or switch to next groove
Stop Hold open hand up Don't play until sign is shown
Volume up Horizontal hand up Increase loudness
Volume down Horizontal hand down Decrease loudness
Speed up Make circle with your hand fast Slowly increase tempo (bpm)
Slow down Make circle with your hand slow Slowly decrease tempo (bpm)
If possible, display pictures of the gestures with labels as a reminder for the players. For example, the gestures in this image show directions in Polish (tempo directions are different than in an example table above).

Gameplay instructions

When the conductor gestures, the band starts playing the first groove. This groove is manipulated and altered by the conductor's continuing gestures. In the first phase, the conductor's goal is to train the players to accurately recognize and respond to the gestures. In the second phase, the conductor has free choice of gestures, but the level of difficulty should increase from simple to more challenging, possibly maneuvering through fun chaos!

Game end

Usually the game ends when everything falls apart. If the players successful in responding to the conductor's gestures, it's a good idea to end the game after a pre-set time.

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