Finalist category: Accessibility Award

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Accessibility Award, Finalist, 2021

KIBO musical instrumentKodaly S.r.l is an Italian innovative start-up based in Milan with a social vocation focused on making the best enjoyable music technology in a simplified way, realizing the dream of people with different abilities making music together without compromising their expressive potential but rather amplifying it. 

The project started in 2015 to help a social cooperative in Milan to create a music workshop for children with special needs. We collected the needs of educators and found technical solutions that were easy to use for both teachers and users and we call it Kibo. 

KIBO is a MIDI bluetooth musical instrument made of solid maple wood, with a modular keyboard consisting of eight distinct, easy-to recognize magnetic shapes that control different musical parameters. By attributing a musical meaning to the forms, an alternative notation system is implicitly introduced, allowing to define a series of actions to be performed, freeing from music theory and facilitating the use of the instrument for users with special needs, children and people without musical skills. 

KIBO offers two types of musical interaction: inserting or extracting modules allows to combine musical loops, activating or silencing the parts of an arrangement; percussion lets you play melodies, rhythms and compose chords like a traditional musical instrument. 

For more than 1 year we have experimented with hundreds of autistic children and teens obtaining exceptional results. We have improved the prototype and continued the experimentation with all types of users with special needs by collaborating with the most important rehabilitation centers in Lombardy involving the best universities in Milan. After more than 3 years of experimentation and prototyping, we started the industrialization process and in 2020 we officially started selling our product, obtaining the approval of the national health service. 

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