Development of methodology for documentation of key action properties and haptic sensation of pipe organ playing
Journal article, 2012
Musical instruments provide auditory, visual and tactile feedback to the performer. The organist hears the pipes sounding as well as the contribution of room acoustics, sees the console, smells the air of the room, and feels the key action properties through her fingers and feet. Thus just as perception of most objects and events is multisensory, the sensation and perception of instrument playing are also multisensory. Within the project, “The Organ as Memory Bank”, we investigate the underlying dimensions of haptics in pipe organ playing, focusing on the mechanical manual-key action. This research involves both objective and subjective characterization of the key action. Objective characterization focuses on mechanical construction of the key and trackers and how it shapes the tactile feedback. The dynamic behavior of the keys is measured as a function of key-fall and velocity as keys are pressed using a controllable linear actuator and characterized by objective parameters. The subjective characterization of the haptics of organ playing is initially surveyed online. Semantic differential scales, which are devised based on the results of the survey, will be used in subjective experiments to reveal the underlying dimensions. Finally the objective (physical) and subjective (perceptual) characteristics will be linked to reveal the salient sensorial key action properties.