This Beautiful Visualisation Makes Music So Easy to Follow

By Chris Mills on at

If you’ve ever glanced at a conductor’s score for a symphony — or, let’s be honest, a child's piano book — you’ll have realised that musical notation is a pain to follow. So instead, this visualisation boils down a Mozart clarinet concerto to its roots to help you follow along.

The video is the work of Stephen Malinowski, and his Music Animation Machine. MAM uses a different kind of notation to show music: rather than a conventional score, with different staffs for each instrument. MAM distils the lines of an entire orchestra down to a few different-coloured instances, making it far easier to distinguish the clarinet line from the the cellos.

As well as being a good way to chill out to Mozart this evening (and a throwback to my days of Windows XP Media Player’s visualiser), it’s a good lesson in graphic design and data visualization. More isn’t always better. [YouTube]