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DMLab London is a meeting place for makers & disabled musicians, a space to explore musical potential and get hands on with kit. It is a partnership between Drake Music, Graeae and Music Hackspace to bring together disabled musicians with technologists, to imagine, hack, design and build new accessible instruments and technology. This could be redesigning a traditional instrument, hacking recording kit to make it more accessible or creating something ground-breaking that we can't even imagine yet. Big or small, a fully-formed idea or just a glimmer, all are welcome...the floor is yours and the doors are open.

This relaxed social event will give you the chance to pitch your idea or request - however big or small - for a new accessible musical instrument or piece of kit, to meet up with other musicians and makers, and to listen to talks by two inspirational women.

Our two speakers, Jo-anne Cox and Dani Clode will open up their practice and share their ideas and challenges - one is a technologist advancing new ideas for artificial limbs and one is a musician imagining new ways for audiences to interact.

Jo-anne Cox

In April 2019 Jo-anne Cox held the first scratch performance of her show Defiant Journey – the sonic saga of a musician and her electric ally, navigating the highs and lows of life as a neurodivergent artist.

The show involves interaction with bespoke designed audio to light and music technology, designed by creative technologist Charles Matthews. The audience can also get hands-on with Vibrotactile technology designed by VibraFusionLab and made by disabled artists from Together! 2012 in East London.

In this presentation Jo-anne will talk about the process of developing Defiant Journey, from initial ideas to first performance. The presentation will cover the Aesthetics of Access, the benefits of multi-sensory engagement and discovering audio to light, music tech and vibrotactile tech as a tool for:

  • communicating hidden disability
  • challenging recovery mode and austerity politics
  • involving audience as equals in immersive and interactive storytelling.

All technology on the project was designed with access in mind and there will be opportunities for you to try it out …. that is if you dare to play the bed bug ipad!

Dani Clode

Dani Clode is a product designer from New Zealand and a MA graduate from the Royal College of Art in London.

Her main project, the Third Thumb explores human augmentation and prosthetic extension. Dani is currently developing the project further with neuroscientists from the Plasticity Lab in the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL, exploring the boundaries of neuroplasticity – seeing how it can be harnessed to improve the usability and control of prosthetic devices, and how our bodies and brains adapt to material change.

Dani also collaborates with The Alternative Limb Project, designing sculptural prosthetic arms that challenge the perception and boundaries of prosthetic design, incorporating new materials and design processes to extend the human form.

She is interested in exploring how she can work with Disabled musicians in the future and will talk about these projects and open up discussions on ideas and inspirations for collaborations.


This will be a relaxed event and there will be a quiet space available with comfortable seats. There is step-free access to the venue which is located on the ground floor of Somerset House. It is fully wheelchair accessible, with an accessible toilet (no hoist). There will be BSL interpretation provided for the two speakers. To book a ticket for an assistant or access support person then please use the 'Pay What You Can - £0' option.

This meetup is brought to you by Music Hackspace and Drake Music.

The venue is located on the ground floor of Somerset House and is fully wheelchair accessible with an accessible toilet. If you have any other access requirements, please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate them.


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