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Arts & Culture

Having the World on Her Strings

VR-Music Partnership Takes Violinist’s Audience to Venues Around Globe

By Maryland Today Staff

When you close your eyes while listening to music, it can feel like you’re in the room with the musicians. Now, thanks to a new virtual reality collaboration between the university’s College of Arts and Humanities and the College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences (CMNS), you almost will be.

Irina Muresanu, an associate professor of violin, has been digitally captured and transported to locations that represent musical compositions from different cultures that make up her “Four Strings Around the World” project, a studio album and series of live concerts that celebrate diverse musical cultures.

The technology the VR project puts on display can also empower teaching, remote medicine and other applications—along with new vistas in the performing arts. Attending a live concert performance can be impossible for hospital patients, or those with low incomes, said Amitabh Varshney, professor of computer science and CMNS dean. “We don’t want anyone to be deprived of these amazing gems of human performances that can lift people up in a very dramatic way,” he said.

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