Monday, February 28, 2011

An Orchestra of Elephants

An Orchestra of Elephants

| Mon Feb. 28, 2011 3:45 AM PST
Prateedah the elephant plays the drum.

Imagine building a xylophone for a 6,000-pound mammal. Columbia University neuroscientist slash experimental musicianDavid Soldier (aka David Sulzer) teamed up with elephant expert Richard Lair, and did just that. At the Thai Elephant Conservation Center (TECC), in Lampang, Thailand, the two men taught elephants to play oversized xylophones, drums, chimes, and even harmonicas. An American expat, Lair had worked with Ruby, an elephant that had famously learned how to paint pictures. He already knew that elephants loved music. After meeting Soldier, he asked him to join the Thai Elephant Orchestra project, an endeavor that, beyond science and art, was intended to draw attention to the elephants' plight. 

[LINK: An Orchestra of Elephants ]

Bonus LINK: Thung Kwian Sunrise < The elephants improvise the music themselves.

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