Karen’s debut with Digital Orchestra

Digital Orchestra at Cumnock Tryst

New member of our Digital Orchestra musician Karen Sutherland tells us about her orchestra debut and what being part of it means to her…

“This was amazing!  I was able to play as part of the group using the Thumbjam app on iPad, I was also able to use Figurenotes to read the music which means I could play along with some of the tunes . Figurenotes is a way to learn music if you find it difficult to read music traditionally and as I am dyslexic this seemed the logical thing to do.  This meant that I was able to pick different instruments and get some wonderful classic sounds like the viola.  Two are really new electric sounds, which sounded quite similar to playing an electric guitar which was really exciting.  This gives you the option to create some really interesting pieces of music through working together with people using all sorts of equipment.

“Being part of the Digital Orchestra’s collaboration with National Youth Orchestras of Scotland at the Cumnock Tryst is really unique and uplifting!  I find it quite relaxing and therapeutic to play music and enjoy mixing with other people. Through this experience, I have been able to play alongside other professional musicians to create a really unique sound and blend between electric instruments and acoustic – ranging from saxophone to piano to double bass. As well as a trumpet playing, an acoustic drum set played alongside an electric drum set and percussion.  Two iPads and laptops were used and there were even some vocals. Personally one of my highlights was hearing all the pieces played together and being able to see the audience sing along at the end.

It was definitely a challenging week as the rehearsal days were quite long but it was completely worth it and I got to listen and take part in something I have never done before.  I’d like to thank everyone in Digital Orchestra for making my debut such an enjoyable experience – especially to all the support team and tech team who help the musicians and the rehearsals go so well that we can put performances on.  

If you want to find out more about what Drake Music Scotland gets up to then check out some of their videos on youtube, and if you want to then please get in touch and we can chat about the experience more. Thanks everyone – I am looking forward to whatever comes next…….!”

Karen Sutherland
Karen performing in our Cumnock Tryst collaboration “Microscopic Dances” with National Youth Orchestras for Scotland (image: Anne Binckebanck)