Anton Maskeliade
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Anton Maskeliade

Moscow, Moscow, Russia | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Moscow, Moscow, Russia | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Solo Electronic Experimental




"Anton Maskeliade: Gesture Wizard"

We’ve all been there - getting so into the music that we start moving and gesticulating in time with what’s playing. Normally we’d call it “dancing” - and it’s usually following the rhythm and sound of the music. But what if it went the other way and the music was controlled by the movement.

For Moscow-based musician Anton Sergeev aka Anton Maskeliade, gesture control forms the basis of a unique live show. Using the LEAP Motion controller and Ableton Live, Anton uses hand gestures to control his music.

How did you first come across LEAP? What does LEAP allow you to do that you can’t accomplish with other controllers?

I read music blogs, and once I saw a gesture technology device I realized that this was what I needed. I bought the LEAP Motion in November 2013; it was an amazing feeling, expanding my capabilities of music expression. First, I used it to manipulate sounds, then - visuals. Now, I control both music and video projection with my hands. I am able to augment the expressive musical possibilities of gestures and overall body movement. Musical experience, like all experience, entails not just one sense, but all of the body's senses combined and orientated in highly specific ways. For this reason, I think a direct physical relationship to music is becoming an increasingly important area of creative as well as academic study.

Can you describe what you're doing with LEAP and how you have it set up?

In my gigs I’m using LEAP Motion with the GECO app, along with an Akai MPD32 MIDI controller, Korg Kaoss Pad 3 sampler, Ableton Live, Resolume for visuals. My setup allows me to control video and audio streams simultaneously and synchronized. Working with LEAP and Resolume, I put a special video effect on each gesture and synchronized it with audio effects in Live. In Live, I’m using various effects, mainly the Live’s Reverb, delays, and distortions, along with some other VSTs. Each gesture makes a unique noise or sound effect and a unique projection. The Kaoss Pad helps me to loop my voice and grind some beat-boxing stuff out live.

Anton goes mobile - playing in the back seat of a car.
What do you think gesture control adds to your sound?

Typically, an electronic music gig features a phlegmatic guy hiding himself from the audience behind a laptop and rolling faders. Actually, it’s boring - I don’t like it. I want to put on a show! I like to expand the methods of creation. I live a life during my gigs. And I can feel myself as a wizard. It’s an unbelievable feeling, to materialize music. LEAP Motion helps me to make it real. - Ableton

"Anton Maskeliade - Crown: New music from Russia"

From Far From Moscow, one of our team of experts bringing you the best new music from around the world: Moscow's 'ephemeral musician' seeks out the intriguing and the frightening.

Moscow’s Anton Maskeliade calls himself an "ephemeral musician". Put differently, his work is only tenuously tied to daily life: "When I was a child, we had a VHS cassette with some American cartoons from the 1920s and ‘30s. I found that old-fashioned style of animation both intriguing and frightening. There was something genuinely scary in both the story-lines and heroes."

His private romance transfers neatly to a new video, Crown, shot on a local train. Most of the film’s considerable charm emerges from Maskeliade’s introspection, no matter how curious his fellow passengers become. - The Guardian

"Off the Rails with 3D MIDI Controller Soundscapes"

Imagery, video, text – whatever its form, ephemeral media is a thrill to experience because it’s forever fleeting. Teeming with the threat that if you look away, even for a second, you could miss it entirely. With his completely improvised performances, Russian-based musician Anton Maskeliade brings this elusive principle into the genres of electronica and contemporary pop. Using his whole body, he creates new soundscapes on the spot with 3D MIDI controllers and bit-crushed drum machines. Never the same song twice.

On the hunt for a tool that would help make his live shows more spectacular and interactive, he discovered Leap Motion. “During my live performances, I feel like a wizard making magic,” he says. “It’s incredible feeling, like I can materialize the music with my hands. Leap Motion puts interaction in a new level. The artist becomes more interesting for the audience to look at.”

Using an AKAI MPD32 Controller, Maskeliade connects his Leap Motion Controller with Ableton to reach into musical streams and control the flow. “Using the Geco MIDI plugin,” he says, “I can easily choose the exact parameter the Leap Motion will change or trigger.” In the video at the top of this post, you can see Anton performing a live piece on Russia’s Electrichka Train. (You can also listen to the original track that he created on his Soundcloud.)

However, Maskeliade’s performances with Leap Motion go beyond Geco MIDI. With his background in projection, web, and graphic design, he’s used the device to directly manipulate visual experiences with Resolume 4 VJ Software. “My live set has diverse ‘spells’ with video synchronization. It looks really astonishing. When an absolutely new wave of technology suddenly becomes available for everyday people, it develops humanity – it expands the mind and enhances the senses.

“I’m happy to be a part of it.” - Leap Motion

"Mark Twain’s Russian descendant brings ephemeral music to Europe Source"

Anton Maskeliade has just released his new single “One Beat”. It includes three abstract tracks which Anton recorded during the 1beat international festival. Anton is a frequent guest of various festivals in Florida, Washington, New York, and Lucerne. His next live event is in Stockholm, where he will present his new single at the invitation of Virus Radio.

Maskeliade as an electronic musician and songwriter from Moscow. His live shows are always extremely imaginative and entertaining.

Anton’s real surname is Sergeev. His uses the pseudonym Maskeliade in memory of his grandfather, whose surname was Maskelason. Anton says he is a distant kin of Mark Twain through that grandfather. Anton is a musician, but a very unusual one; he describes his own music as "ephemeral".

Anton Maskeliade. Crown (Elektrichka Live). During live shows he extracts his music from his laptop, making hocus-pocus gestures in the air over the screen, as if miming some famous orchestra conductor. In fact, the 27-year-old uses a Leap Motion gesture controller and the Geco Midi application.

Together they act like a thereminvox; the musician controls the sound by moving his hands in an electromagnetic field near two metallic antennas. But unlike thereminvox, which produces only one kind of sound, these new instruments can be used to produce countless varieties. As for how exactly the instrument reacts to hand movements, that can be programmed, too.

Last spring Anton had a trip to the United States as part of the Onebeat cultural program.
“When you talk to the best musicians in the world, the people who play the most unusual kinds of instruments, it’s really cool," Anton says. “It extends your instruments of perception.” Anton performed at 1beat together with Pakistani prodigy Usman Riaz; Chance McCoy, who is from the States; and Venezuela’s Edward Ramirez, winner of the Latin Grammy Awards. - Russia Beyond The Headlines

"Best of 2014."

Это псевдоним Антона Сергеева, изобретателя новых музыкальных пространств. Отдельное шоу он творит из того, как исполняет свои электронные саги. - Snob




Anton Maskeliade is one of the first artists in the world who creates music and visuals with the leap motion gesture control technology.

He is the winner of Contemporary Art Awards for achievements in the field of electronic music and has performed at different venues (ranging from clubs to museums) around the world: New York, London, Paris, Lucerne, Stockholm, Moscow, including the biggest international festivals such as Glastonbury (UK), Fusion (DE), Pohoda (SK). Maskeliade also participated as musician & speaker at various showcase festivals: Waves in Vienna & Bratislava, Ment in Ljubljana, Colisium in St. Petersburg & Moscow. 

Maskeliade is recognized by the worldwide media: The Guardian, Noisey, Ableton, Leap Motion, as well as biggest media from Russia: Rolling Stone, DjMag, Afisha, Colta, Snob, LAM. Some of them listed him as one of the best Russian electronic musicians. 

Band Members