Synth Petting Zoo

Synth Petting Zoo event header. Photo of a cow and tractor on a farm

Synth Petting Zoo

The Garden City Electronic Music Society and the Victoria Conservatory of Music join together for an afternoon of electronic music learning at the Synth Petting Zoo!

The Synth Petting Zoo brings local artists together along with their gear and the public is invited to come explore a variety of vintage, custom-built and contemporary synthesizers and ask questions of their owners.  This drop-in event is a great opportunity for artists to talk shop about their craft and choice of gear, and for those new to the world of synthesis to get a sense of directions they could take. This event is family friendly, and open to folks of all ages.

The entrance to Wood Recital Hall is off the VCM parking lot at 900 Johnson Street.

Proof of vaccination will be required for all attendees over 12, and masks will be required for everyone 5 and older.

Free, drop in event

FREE for all ages and levels of experience, the Synth Petting Zoo is an opportunity to talk shop on synthesizers, and try out a variety of vintage, modular and other synthesizers and electronic instruments.

Presentations by


Local pianist and electronic music artist Danuel Tate will be presenting a workshop on using Additive synthesis in live creation using early sampling hardware technologies. Including an Emu Emax 1 from California circa 1986.


DJ, Ableton Alpha tester, and VCM faculty member Nathan Jonson will be presenting some of the diverse creative ways of interacting with Ableton Live using different hardware (some expected and some unexpected!).


Doug’s presentation will take place in the Alix Goolden Performance Hall where Doug will be performing that evening. Doug will provide an overview of the “Spectrum Piano” device. This self-built instrument uses electromagnetic flux to vibrate acoustic piano strings without touching them. Through midi control, this device essentially turns a piano into an acoustic synthesizer.

In addition to these short workshops, there will be local artists and their synth set-ups for you to try out. This is a great opportunity for those just starting out, or those who are simply curious about the craft of electronic music, to learn from more seasoned synthesists.