VIDEO: Minster's light organ draws crowds of all ages at Signals Festival

A COOL display combining light and music attracted young and old to the Minster to have a go at playing the “light organ”.

The instrument, which detects sound and lights up in an array of colours, was at the heart of last week’s Signals Festival.

In a collaboration by Rotherham Music Hub and the Children’s Capital of Culture project, adults and children were able to try out the novel equipment, with sessions for pre-school children and a performance by a care home choir.

Esther Aldwinckle (23), from the hub, said: “We got in contact with a company that had these light organs and said we’d love them to be part of the festival.

“It’s really cool because it’s such an interactive experience. So many people can join.

“We’ve had a lot of young people and children come by and enjoy it and all their parents loved it as well.

“We’ve had amazing feedback from the public, which is really nice.

“Lot of parents have spoken very highly of it and individuals come in and are grateful that these sort of opportunities are happening, especially because it’s free.”



The organ responds to sound, so people can just walk up and play an instrument or sing something in one of the mics around it, explained musician Esther, who has moved back to Rotherham from London to contribute to the Children’s Capital of Culture in 2025.

She said: “Previously, I worked in fashion — and unfortunately all of the opportunities in fashion are in London — but I decided to have a career break and I really wanted to contribute to the community.

“I really wanted to create opportunities in Rotherham. I love it.”

Chris Badger (25), an engagement assistant at Children’s Capital of Culture, said: “My job is to help engage the community and get them excited about what is to come.

“Rotherham is building up to having a 365 day-festival in 2025.

“We started last year and we’re slowly building it up to 2025.

“It’s really great to see people engaging with music.

“Music is often seen as a very specialist skill that not many people are involved in, but you can just talk into the microphone and just watch it move.

“You don’t have to be particularly musical to watch how brilliant it can be.

“You can be a pro or an amateur, it looks equally amazing, you can create your own piece of artwork.”

Chris said the message was clear, adding: “People love this and they want to see more of it. They want to see more going on in the community.”

Visit to see a video of the organ in action.

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