Having grown up on the original Star Wars trilogy, it is hard to describe the excitement I felt as I sat in a darkened theater as a man in my 30’s and that familiar theme blasted out signaling the start of the The Phantom Menace. Of course, it was all downhill from there, but John Williams’ iconic score can still raise the old heartbeat a notch or two. While not capable of pumping out a version quite as stirring as that performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, a team has constructed a barrel organ out of Lego that plays the Star Wars theme.
The Star Wars Builders of Sound barrel organ was put together from over 20,000 Lego bricks to celebrate the 3D premiere of Star Wars – Episode 1 earlier this year. The exterior of the barrel features scenes from four Star Wars locales – Hoth, Tatooine, Endor and the Death Star. As the barrel is manually rotated, the bricks contact mechanical levers that strike keys on a built-in keyboard to play the notes.
The team developed the barrel organ together with Rene Hoffmeister, one of six Lego Certified Professionals worldwide. The organ, which is free to play, was exhibited in various cinemas around Germany at the time of the Star Wars - Episode 1 3D release and is now touring several Lego events before heading to Legoland Germany later this year where it will be put on permanent display. There’s no word on whether a version that plays Cantina Band numbers is in the works.
Check out the following video to see the barrel organ in action.