What type of witchcraft is this?

2018-04-27

Searching through the web, you find a video on YouTube that leave you speechless: an entire orchestra playing with digital scores that advance by themselves, without the need for the musician to turn the page. Under the video, a user's comment says: "an incredible app that will change the way musicians read and play music".

It seems that the app in question is called BlackBinder. We could not resist looking for the website and know more about it, and we have to say that it looks very, very good.

According to its website, BlackBinder is a patented technology, and there is a multidisciplinary team of 12 people behind it. It is a reader of digital sheet music, without paging.

Us human do stupid things sometimes. Since music has always been written on sheets of paper, and paper has space limitations, inevitably there are scores that occupy several sheets and cause the musician to have to turn from page to another. With the arrival of the digital age, we have blindly called scores that are simply in PDF format "digital scores", but they have the same limitations as sheets of paper (you have to turn the page/s). What BlackBinder does, however, is to visualize a true digital score; that is, a score that really takes advantage of the possibilities of digital format, and therefore not necessary to turn pages because it has no limitations of space.

On the official website, we see a download link in the App Store. According to the description of the application, it has two functions: you can set the metronome speed at which you want the staves to advance, or you can make BlackBinder "listen to you" by using the microphone of your device and the staves move according to your interpretation.

Stop to think about what you just read… This can be a real revolution.

Here you can see an entire orchestra playing Mozart's Symphony No. 40 with BlackBinder, using tablets instead of tradition music stands:

It does not stop here. In the App Store there are screenshots of the application, which show how you can also take notes directly on the digital music sheet:

It turns out that these annotations are layered, so you can make several versions of the same score. For example, it occurs to us that if you are a teacher and you are working on the Haydn Concert with your students, you can use layer 1 to annotate student 1, then use layer 2 for student 2, and so on. And then you can share each layer with your respective student.

If this is correct, we can truly say that we are facing a true technological transformation in the world of music. Perhaps there are those who are not yet aware of it, but we here at Trumpetland, other musicians, and lovers of technological progress have marveled at the product. This is a big deal!

Unfortunately, we do not know more about BlackBinder, because it seems that it can only be downloaded by invitation for the time being. But we promise that we will do everything possible to contact the developers behind this technological wonder and have them tell us exactly what they are creating, and if we can do anything to help so that trumpet players may benefit from BlackBinder through Trumpetland.

We will keep you informed!