A Piano Made of Telephones

A Piano Made of Telephones

This is a Fluxus score. Fluxus is a type of performance art. A Fluxus score, like a musical score, is a sort of recipe for a performance. For more information, read The Fluxus Performance Workbook.

This performance requires several telephones, preferably telephones of as many different types as possible. Ideally, each should produce a unique sound through its microphone, which can either be original to the telephone or added. The phones should be amplified, for the benefit of the audience. A mixer or an effects petal may be used to augment the sound from each phone. It might be nice to paint the telephones black and white, to recall the color of keys on a piano.

The telephones need not be connected to a telephone line, although for an other performance they were connected to a Tele-Q device, modified so that it could serve as a switchboard to make the many telephones ring as needed..

A Piano Made of Telephones

[ 1 or 2 performers]

There are two scripts. The first script is composed of the sort of stuff that someone would say on the telephone The second is a series of responses, like “What’s the catch?” or “I can’t talk now, I’m busy” or “he isn’t here right now. Can I take a message?”

  • Pick up a telephone. Read part of the first script.
  • Hang up the telephone.
  • Pick up a different telephone. Read part of the second script.
  • Hang up the telephone, or put one down and pick up another while the first is on "hold".
  • Repeat as desired.