Teaching rhythm to the world

Goal

To teach people to play Steve Reich’s Clapping Music and gather rhythm data for a research report


Steve Reich’s Clapping Music

Clapping music icon

Services Provided

  • Concept development
  • Prototyping

  • UX & UI design
  • Game design
  • User testing

  • Video production

  • iOS app development
  • Data collection

Fun facts

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210,000+

downloads since launch with users across the world

Archi Moi Mini icon

On tour!

Top scorers performed the piece live at The Southbank Centre

Archi Moi Mini icon

The data recorded has been used in various projects at the Queen Mary University

Alan

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 out more?

Talk to our Senior Project Manager Alan if you want to know more or want to discuss working with us.

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Teaching rhythm to the world
Transforming Steve Reich’s Clapping Music into an addictive game

Andrew Burke, the Chief Executive of the The London Sinfonietta which is a pioneer of contemporary classical music, approached Amphio with the idea of an iPhone game based on Steve Reich’s Clapping Music as an extension of their ambition to explore new ways of digitally engaging audiences with their art form. Together with Queen Mary University of London we set out to build a mobile experience based on the piece which is performed entirely by clapping.

Steve Reich’s orginal notation for Clapping Music

At the beginning of development, we identified three main challenges the project needed to address to achieve its goal of engaging new and existing audiences:

  • Build a fun and educational music experience which can teach rhythm to audiences of all levels, across the world.
  • Create high user retention to improve users’ rhythm and increase engagement with the composer and live performances hosted by London Sinfonietta.
  • Collect user data for the research project conducted by the Queen Mary University of London.

Our solution was Steve Reich’s Clapping Music, a free iOS game that improves your rhythm by challenging you to tap in time with a constantly shifting pattern. If you slip up or your accuracy falls too low, it’s game over.

User about to lose the level

The progress of our development was shared on a blog and a microsite to build and capitalise on user interest before the launch. We explained our thinking behind the three core parts of the app experience:

  1. The game: The competitive element of the game encourages users to want to return and constantly improve their performance. Top gamers were invited to perform the piece live with the London Sinfonietta, which created an important link between the offline and online experiences.
  2. Practice mode: The practice mode made it easy for users to hone their skills and try out individual patterns to better understand the structure of the composition. The data informed the academic research and concluded that a digital product can help to improve rhythm.
  3. Discovery: In-depth content such as exclusive interviews with Steve Reich, a filmed performance, and the original score allowed for greater discovery of the story behind the music.

The app was launched in June 2015 and the reception of the app exceeded all expectations. Since launch the app has been downloaded over 210,000 times, with users from across the world.

‘Maddeningly addictive’
– The New York Times

‘Clapping Music is Rock Band with better music (yeah, I said it)’
– Kill Screen

2,500 players submitted their high score and top gamers were invited to perform the piece live at The Southbank Centre – demonstrating the tangible value of the app and how it successfully created interest for contemporary music amongst new and existing audiences.

Steve Reich performing with the London Sinfonietta


Made in collaboration with:

Queen Mary University & The London Sinfonietta
Alan

Want to find
 out more?

Talk to our Senior Project Manager Alan if you want to know more or want to discuss working with us.

Email
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Call
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