‘As we were thinking about different ideas for the Time Unwrapped videos we kept coming back to pitch as the best representation of music and time. Keeping music at the heart of our inspiration, we wanted to show the normally unseen vibrations that constitute different pitches, and for that we needed to almost stop time.
‘Filming at a very high frame rate (1500 frames per second, compared with the standard 25 frames per second of TV in the UK) with a specialist camera and lighting allowed us to shoot in ultra slow motion. It revealed just how extreme the vibration of a bowed open string or a beaten cymbal really is, the latter almost appearing to melt into ripples after the blow.
‘Many viewers have assumed that we used special effects or detuned the strings to create such a seemingly unreal response from the cello, viola, cymbal, harp and timpani, but they were all regular instruments played in their normal way. Each 20-second clip is made up of only a 0.3 second of real-time playing.’