Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/04/14/wii_ubs_virtual_maestro/

Wii can conduct an orchestra too

Like Guitar Hero only more arty

By James Sherwood

Posted in Games, 14th April 2008 16:51 GMT

If rocking out with Guitar Hero isn’t your forte, then how would you like to conduct your own classical orchestra? It’s now possible thanks to the creation of a 'virtual maestro' game.

The Wii title was created by banking giant UBS as a promotional tool, according to the Associated Press. The game allows the company's would-be Herbert von Karajans to conduct an on-screen orchestra with the console’s Remote as though it were conductor’s baton.

To create the game, UBS recorded the Verbier Festival Orchestra in Switzerland while it played three classical pieces, including Rossini’s William Tell Overture and Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony. UBS' developers then wrote software that speeds up or slows down the music according to the Remote’s movements.

For example, moving the Remote too quickly causes the music to play with a jig-like tempo and moving the wireless controller too slowly will, you guessed it, mean the music comes over all slow and funereal.

UBS sponsors the Verbier Festival Orchestra - conducted by James Levine - and has already set the game up in concert hall lobbies in the US, as part of an ongoing tour programme. However, the financial services company hopes to expand the virtual composition videogame out into Europe later this year.