UMPRUM.wav – Bridging music and design at Milan Design Week 2023

17.–23. 4. 2023
Milan Design Week 2023 / Tortona Design Week, Via Savona 57, Milano, Italy

Detailed information can be found on the website

Ride the waves of music. Experience new instruments, play with sounds and melodies. The UMPRUM.wav project will rock this year's Milan Design Week.

UMPRUM.wav – Bridging music and design at Milan Design Week 2023

The interactive project by the Academy of Arts, Architecture, and Design in Prague (UMPRUM) and the didactic Melodize app offers a way to understand the structure of music and to gain a fresh perspective on sound and musical instruments. It is the result of a long-term collaboration between designers, leading Czech musicians, music theorists, and people involved in teaching music. The interactive installation will be on display during Tortona Design Week in Milan from April 17th to the 24th.

UMPRUM.wav is based on collaborations between various studios of the school and a number of other experts. This project presents a societal dimension and seeks to address the lack of music education. The main impetus came from the Product Design Studio, led by Michal Froněk and Jan Němeček. Both are very involved in music, Jan sings in a choir and plays guitar, and Michal is a self-described audiophile who has a passion for music reproduction systems and vintage electronics.

Together with students, the heads of the studio have spent the past few months studying music theory, exploring the forms of sound, and preparing to tackle the complex design problem of creating new musical instruments and sound design. The result is functional acoustic instruments that develop the basic archetypes of stringed and wind instruments in a unique way. For example, Karolína Vintrová based her minimalist instrument on the form of the didgeridoo, which in her conception wraps around and embraces the human body. Ivo Jedlička was inspired by the monochord on which Pythagoras traced the connections between music, mathematics, and astronomy. "Of the five instruments on display, my favourite is probably Miloslav Chytil's organ, which he constructed from various plastic waste pipes tuned to musical tones and powered by an ordinary workshop compressor," says Michal Froněk.

And how do potential users view the instruments and the project? "The cooperation with UMPRUM was great and inspiring, I met very skilled students and artists. I had the opportunity to rehearse with Sara Jedličková and then record the instruments in Soundsquare. Many of them are sonically beautiful, like the organ, brass, or all the stringed instruments, but I don't want to leave anything out. It is not only about the instrument‘s appearance, but they have a powerful sonic character that greatly inspires subsequent creation. I have used the samples in my recordings for Milano and in the future, I am very happy to use them in my own work", says musician and composer Sára Vondrášková, who performs under the stage name Never Sol, about her collaboration with the Product Design Studio.

Experimental music and specific sounds from instruments designed by UMPRUM students were professionally recorded in the Soundsquare studio. These musical recordings are exclusive content of the Melodize app, which visitors at the Tortona Design Week will be able to try out. A number of renowned Czech artists have contributed to its development, including DNÉ, Teepee, Albert Černý, Thom Artway, and Tereza Rays. In the app, you can work with sounds, edit them, speed them up, find harmonies, and compose. "With this app, we were able to combine design and music education and find ways to teach and, more importantly, understand the structure and principles of melodies in a fun way," explains Michal Froněk about the scope of this unique project.

Visitors can expect a show in Milan during the exhibition. In addition to a separate interactive installation, there will be projections and it will be possible to try composing with a kind of jukebox, the exhibition will be enriched by live performances of Czech and Italian musicians. They will be jamming on the exhibited instruments and presenting their potential in the context of their own compositions.


photos and other information about the exhibition are continuously updated


Accompanying programme

Short performances every day at 11 am and 4 pm

Jam sessions:
16.4. 7 pm: Never Sol, Sarah Jedličková
18.4. 4 pm: Danillo Gallo, Kathya West
21.4. 4 pm: Alina Kalancea, Never Sol, Sarah Jedličková
22.4. 11 am: brunch jam, Never Sol, Sarah Jedličková


Explore the audiovisual  

Experiment with the sound:

Follow our shows:


Project Management: Michal Froněk, and Jan Němeček.
Exhibitors: Miloslav Chytil, Theodor Hozák, Ivo Jedlička, Natália Krišťáková, and Karolína Vintrová.
Text: Vít Novák, and Zuzana Řičářová. 
Architecture and installation: Jan Lechner, Sofia Artemeva, Ivo Jedlička, Miloslav Chytil, and Theodor Hozák.
Production: Michaela Kaplánková
Graphic design: Oskar Koutný, and Kateřina Pravdová.
Pedagogical leadership - projections: Jan Netušil, and Jiří Hölzel.
Projection: Alžběta Horňáková, Jakub Žanony, Klára Vlachová, and Natálie Portíková.
Musical accompaniment: Sára Vondrášková (Never Sol), and Sarah Jedličková.
Technical Support: Karim Tarakji, Štěpán Kovář, and Matyáš Černý.
Recording studio: Soundsquare
Engineering: Quix

Partner: Charles University, Faculty of Education

The project reg. no. 0215000013 is carried out with the financial support of the Ministry of Culture, the National Restoration Plan, and the European Union


The photographs of musical instruments were taken at the Rudolfinum in the EDUcentre of the Czech Philharmonic Educational Programmes Department. The project was designed by 0,5 Studio


About the Melodize project
Melodize guides students to work with melody, harmony, rhythm and sound. It reveals the building blocks of music interactively and effectively. It encourages students to create their own music, as well as to understand the overall functioning of a musical composition. In this way it enriches the current education system where children receive information about the origins of music primarily outside the school environment. Melodize creates an environment where pupils are involved in the process of music making, not least through the opportunity to work directly on their favourite pieces. It motivates and also encourages students to get feedback from their peers. The environment of the app is friendly not only to students but also to teachers. It allows teachers even without a music background to use lessons that are specially prepared in close collaboration with the Charles University, Faculty of Education. Jaroslav Raušer in cooperation with Jan P. Muchov were responsible for the creation of the application.


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