FAQS

How can I get involved in the Robot Orchestra project?

There are lots of ways to get involved – you could start recycling old computer parts, junk and old instruments to use to make a musical robot, attend a maker event or if you are a makerspace, put on your own event and get in touch to tell us about it. Going to a maker event is a great way to find collaborators who can help you.

WHAT KIND OF RECYCLED COMPONENTS DO YOU NEED? HOW CAN I DONATE THEM?

We’re looking for old computer parts (hard drives, wires, disc drives), old instruments – parts must be clean and safe to handle. Ideally you will want to use them for making your own robot but we are open to receiving donation boxes for specific events. Get in touch if you want to make a donation, telling us what you have and whether you can drop it off.

HOW DO I MAKE A ROBOT?

We’re keen that you use your imagination, get creative and try things out. But you can also learn from other makers who will be sharing their robot designs on social media using the hashtag #robotsarecoming.

Also, visit the meet the robots page to get ideas and to have a go at building an existing robot. Then have a go at making your own. An easy starting point is to adapt an existing instrument in some way.

WHAT RESOURCES ARE THERE TO PLAN MY EVENT

Visit our resources page to watch videos, download worksheets and session plans. This includes resources for teachers and maker spaces.

WHERE CAN I LEARN TO MAKE ROBOTS?

Sign up to attend an event or encourage your school or makerspace to get involved

I HAVE GOT SKILLS IN MAKING ROBOTS, CAN I VOLUNTEER?

Absolutely – we are looking for volunteers with computing, music and making skills to help out. Get in touch to tell us about your skills and we can try and match you up with an event organiser.

WE RUN AN EVENTS SPACE AND WE WANT TO GET INVOLVED BUT WE DON’T KNOW ANY MAKERS OR CODERS

If you are based in Greater Manchester in the UK, get in touch with us or one of our partners to explore who you might be able to collaborate with. And, if you are musical venue based in Manchester, do get in touch.

CAN YOU PROVIDE EQUIPMENT TO HELP US BUILD ROBOTS?

We have a limited budget for equipment kits (including raspberry pis, arduinos, crumbles) but priority is given to Greater Manchester schools and makers participating in hackdays without a budget to buy their own. Get in touch if you would like to discuss how we might be able to help.

I TRIED TO MAKE A ROBOT BUT IT DIDN’T WORK, WHAT CAN I DO NOW?

Don’t give up just yet! Share your progress using the hashtag #robotsarecoming. Get down to an event or makerspace to see if someone might be able to help you.

HOW WILL YOU SELECT ROBOTS FOR THE ORCHESTRA?

We’re asking musicians and makers and members of the public to help us select robots. Ideally they will be musical, made collaboratively and from recycled materials and also inspire and excite and audience. We’ll be awarding badges to help us see which robots will be able to play as part of the orchestra. Have a look at what we are looking for here: http://www.robotorchestra.co.uk/meet-the-robots/

WHAT HAPPENS TO THE ROBOTS AFTER THEY HAVE PERFORMED IN THE ORCHESTRA?

The orchestra has already been invited to attend other events – if you donate your robot to the orchestra, it can be involved in those events too.

WHAT IF I MAKE A ROBOT AND IT IS NOT SELECTED?

Taking part if what this is all about – keep working on your robot and share your robots story with us using the hashtag #robotsarecoming

WHERE WILL THE ROBOT ORCHESTRA BE PERFORMING AND HOW CAN I ATTEND?

Check our events page and be sure to sign up to our mailing list so that you get invited to performances.

MY QUESTION IS NOT ANSWERED

Get in touch and tell us your questions.

HOW DID THIS CRAZY PROJECT GET STARTED?

Professor Danielle George and Dr Erinma Ochu were on the steering committee of the European City of Science. The City of Science wanted a unique citizen science project. Erinma had watched and enjoyed Danielle’s Christmas lectures, where in one episode they create a Robot Orchestra to play the theme tune from Dr Who. They were both curious about how they could come up with a fantastic, collaborative and creative project for young people to get into science, engineering and music. And… Manchester Robot Orchestra was born…

We then got lots of partners involved, and students and practitioners and hired the fabulous Alison McMurray to manage the project… the rest is history!