Giant Wooden Xylophone in Japanese Forest Plays the Notes of Bach’s Cantata 147

Japanese Forest Xylophone Bach

Imagine walking through the woods and then suddenly hearing the calming melodies of Bach playing in the distance. That’s exactly the type of magical scenario that creative director Morihiro Harano and his team at Mori Inc. created in 2012. The company collaborated with carpenter Mitsuo Tsuda and sound engineer Kenjiro Matsuo to create a giant xylophone in a forest that plays a special wooden symphony.

Elevated above the forest floor, the huge xylophone was installed in the woods of Kyushu, Japan. It comprises hundreds of different-sized pieces of wood, each of which plays a different note when struck. In a video showcasing the instrument, a wooden ball is placed at the start of the xylophone, which descends at a slight angle. As the ball rolls freely down, it hits each wooden panel and plays the notes of Bach’s Cantata 147, Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring.

The beautiful sounds are entirely authentic and unaltered. What you hear is simply the raw recording of the wooden instrument and the surrounding natural environment. The mesmerizing video was created for Japanese telecommunication company Docomo as a commercial for its Touch Wood SH-08C handset—a wood-encased phone. It’s not only a great ad, but it also showcases the creative team’s incredible talent for engineering.

Check out the video below, plus a behind-the-scenes look at how NTTDocomo: Xylophone was made.

This giant xylophone in a forest plays Bach’s Cantata 147, Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring when a ball rolls down it.

Here's a behind-the-scenes look at how it was made.

Mori Inc.: Website | YouTube

All images via Mori Inc.

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Emma Taggart

Emma Taggart is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met. Originally from Northern Ireland, she is an artist now based in Berlin. After graduating with a BA in Fashion and Textile Design in 2013, Emma decided to combine her love of art with her passion for writing. Emma has contributed to various art and culture publications, with an aim to promote and share the work of inspiring modern creatives. While she writes every day, she’s also devoted to her own creative outlet—Emma hand-draws illustrations and is currently learning 2D animation.
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