William Close’s passion is to create and play unusual musical instruments that are in a way closer to sculptures or architectural projects. In 2014, officials from Guinness World Records confirmed that Close’s “Earth Harp” was the “longest stringed instrument in the world”, measuring nearly 958 ft., after the artist gave a concert in Singapore using a 36-story building as the instrument’s neck. “I love creating sound. I love creating new ways to make sound, to make music. It’s an amazing experienct to start working in the shop on an idea, build it and then get to a place where it sounds great.”
A performer for 20 years, William Close is a musician, lecturer and inventor who has created over 50 musical instruments, including the Earth Harp. William first set up the Earth Harp, the world’s largest harp, across a valley that extended 1,000 feet. He has developed many musical instruments, experiences and designs that are completely new to the world. His vision and ideas have been presented and celebrated all around the planet. William offers a truly unique and creative speaking experience!
William magnificent presentations on stage often include one or more of his incredible instruments such as the Earth Harp, Aqua Tar, Drum Jacket along with others. He transports the audience through his unique and inventive world with words along with his musical performance. William’s lectures are very interactive as he gets the audience involved in the music, and the creation of their own design!
William has done extensive educating, lecturing, and workshops through the years. His lectures incorporate his musical inventions along with other powerful themes that relate to his experience, such as design, architecture, science, travel, sculpture, sound, invention, acoustics innovation. etc.
William often has some of his instruments on stage with him, allowing for an interactive verbal and musical experience with the audience.
In addition to his musical performance William will share:
- The science and construction of the perfect acoustics for any venue.
- Installation art as a sculptural concept, developed over the past decade.
- The building and fabrication of each of his instruments.
- How sailboats and architecture along with the study of sculpture and sound design play an integral role for this musical genius.
- How to push the boundaries and always look for the fusion of music that is powerful, epic and emotional!
William Close has developed many musical instruments, experiences and designs that are completely new to the world. His incredible vision and unique ideas have been presented and celebrated all around the planet.
William will transport your audience with his one-of-a-kind presentations and take you on a journey through his uniquely innovative process of using the power of his musical performances combined with interactive lectures.
With the help of audience participation, William teaches how to create a personal musical design.
In this presentation your audience will discover the power of:
- The birth of an innovative idea and the vision it takes to bring it to life.
- The creative process of developing a never before thought of concept.
- Using science and imagination to bring your creation to life.
- The Grand Theater at the Shanghai International Arts Festival
- Grand Auditorium at the Macau International Arts Festival
- The Coliseum in Rome for La Notte Bianca
- A 9th Century Mid-Evil Castle in Italy for the Verrucchio Festival
- The Teatro Municipal in Sao Paulo for Virada Cultural
- The Space Needle in Seattle for Bumbershoot
- Lightning in a Bottle
- Miami Sleepless Nights
In addition, William and The Earth Harp have stunned audiences with his full-length performances at performing arts centers including:
- The Kennedy Center
- The Alys Stephens Center
- The Van Wezel Performing Arts Center
- The Carnegie Science Center
- The Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture
- The Centre in Kerikeri, New Zealand
- William has also worked with Top Fortune 500 companies including
- The NFL
- …. and many more.
- The Earth Harp has a permanent installation at Cirque du Soleil’s show “Ka” at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
William Close is an artist and musician that has developed over 100 new types of musical instruments. He is the inventor of the majestic stringed instrument “The Earth Harp”. The Earth Harp is the largest stringed instrument on the planet. Some of Closes other instruments include, The Drum Orb, The Percussion Jacket, The Aquatar, the Wing Harp, Drumbrella to name a few.
William is the Founder and Artistic Director of EarthHarp Collective and MASS Ensemble. MASS is an acronym for music architecture sound and sculpture. The groups work with his unique designs to create music based stage shows that push the envelope of the musical experience.
Close has traveled extensively around the planet performing and inventing new musical experiences. William has inspired millions with his unique musical works. He recently finished third as Americas most talented on the television show “Americas got Talent”.
William studied sculpture and sound design at the Art Institute of Chicago. His unique combination of sculpture, music and installation art blossomed into a new genera of music making designs and his installations and performances have been experienced throughout the world. He has performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Lincoln Center in New York, to the Coliseum in Rome, The Grand Theater in Macau and Hong Kong just to name a few.
William’s work has transformed concepts of musical instruments and musical performances. His open-minded cutting edge thinking continues to create new designs in music, musical concepts and shows.
The Earth Harp is the largest stringed instrument on the planet. It was developed by William in 1999. The body of the instrument rests on the stage and the strings travel out over the audience attaching to the back of the theater, turning the theater / concert hall, architecture and landscape into the instrument. The giant long strings are played with violin rosin covered gloves. The player runs their hands along the strings creating beautiful cello like tones. The reason it is titled the Earth Harp is due to the fact that the first time it was installed, the strings ran from one side of a valley 1000 ft. across to the other side, turning the Earth / landscape into a giant harp. The Earth Harp has been installed around the world. The Strings have stretched to the top of the Seattle Space needle, To Temples in Vietnam, in the famous Grand Theater of Macau, The Coliseum in Rome, Amazing Architecture in Hong Kong and India, to the Kennedy Center and Lincoln center in the United States.
William’s work explores the connection between architecture and music. Inspired by the quote “architecture is frozen music”, Close creates musical installations that use the architecture as part of the instrument. He has developed two Symphonic / musical houses working with architects to build the musical instruments into the architecture. The Houses are truly musical instruments.
William Close’s ideas and experiences are very unique. In 2007 William lost everything he had to the wild fires of California. His home studio and all his inventions and instruments were destroyed. Everything was gone! William persevered, rebuilding new and better versions of the instruments, a new studio and he has just finished rebuilding the house into an amazing new piece of musical architecture in place of the old house The experiences that surrounded these events were powerful and transformative for William. Through these hardships William has grown and expanded as both an artist and a person with his partner Sarah and their son Phoenix.