Just in time for gifting season, Teenage Engineering has released a product that’s perfect for the music lover in your life—cool, functional and extremely adorable.
The company has designed a collection of wooden dolls that can sing on their own or combine to form a tabletop choir, as Gizmodo reported. The eight dolls were inspired by Teenage Engineering’s very first project, the original absolut choir, but come with some very 2022 features.
Each doll is handcrafted from solid beech and polished with hard wax oil. Inside, you’ll find the speaker module, which has four hours of performance time and is removable as well as rechargeable. To control the dolls, the user is invited to play with them: A tap on the head will play or pause the music; a tilt to the left or right will decrease or increase the volume; and a little smack to the head will turn the speaker off completely.
Based on cultures and characters from around the globe, the dolls radiate a similar energy to the animatronics found in Disney’s It’s a Small World ride. In accordance with their personality, each one comes with its own vocal tonality. For example, the Italian Carlo is a baritone, while the Egyptian Hatshepsut is a mezzo soprano and the Russian Olga is a contralto.
On their own, each doll can sing a captivating solo, but when paired with their wooden brethren, a full choir is on display. You can choose among 22 pre-programmed compositions, from the holiday favorite “Deck the Halls” to classics by Bach and Beethoven. Or, if you consider yourself a musical prodigy among their ranks, you can have the choir sing one of your own pieces. Any midi keyboard can be paired to the dolls via Bluetooth, allowing you to test out original songs with a practice choir.
At $249 each, it would cost about $2,000 to have the full complement of dolls at your disposal. But you need start with only two to create the choir effect, so you can work your way up from a duo to the entire octet.