Barrel organ made from Lego plays the Star Wars theme


Whether or not you are a fan of the first installment of the Star Wars prequels, you have to see what [Lorenz Lnggrtnr] and [Renee Hoffmeister] have put together for the movie’s 3D debut.

In an attempt to capture the essence of Star Wars in a new fashion, they constructed a large barrel organ from Lego bricks that plays the movie’s legendary opening theme when turned. The barrel is separated into four parts, each representing one of the series’ iconic settings in plastic block form.

Hoth, the Death Star, Tatooine, and Endor are all featured on the organ, with each environment’s structures playing specific notes from the song. As the barrel turns each Lego structure toggles a note to be played on the attached organ, via a “reading” mechanism built from metal arms and Lego tires.

It looks fantastic, and sounds pretty decent too. Be sure to stick around for a short video that shows off the barrel organ in action.

[via Wired]


  1. Jarel says:

    I don’t know if that girl is just not cranking at a steady tempo or if the design just sucks, but that sounded awful!

    • M4CGYV3R says:

      I think about half of it was the weird speed at which it plays, and the other half was that the sound they chose was pretty awful and not very clear or staccato sounding.

    • Willaim says:

      who gives a flying fk about a few notes being off or sour? Nevermind.. you apparently do. enjoy it for what it is a really cool barrel organ Star Wars Themed.

      • Volfram says:

        Some of us have a musical background. I’m sure you have silly, tiny things that drive you crazy as well.

        The coolness level due to the combination of Star Wars and Lego and the attention to detail is already exceptionally high, we just think it would be even higher if all the notes sounded right.

  2. Vonskippy says:

    A momentous occasion here folks, note this date as LEGO has finally jumped the shark.

  3. HAD says:

    Now THIS is “really friggin’ complex”

  4. Phantom says:

    That sounds awful!

  5. Greenaum says:

    Come on, it’s amazing! The build is tremendous, and the mechanism is ingenious in how straightforward it is, and yet reliable, even tho it’s reading frickin’ lego!

    The tempo is off, but that’s because the girl wasn’t cranking it quite fast enough. Someone with stronger arms would have it sounding great!

  6. Botelho says:

    I agree, I agree!

  7. avaviel says:

    Ugh. You’re ugly. Your face – It’s a severe waste of time. Looking at it I’m reminded of little pieces of broken plastic burned by a soldering iron. You should consider getting it checked out.

    Oh, I’m sorry. Was I being inconsiderate? Am I commenting where the saying, “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all?” comes into play? Maybe I’m ignoring the advice your mother gave to you as you have done.

    Hard work is reason unto itself. The lessons that were learned here can be applied other places. If you haven’t understood that after however long you’ve read Hack-A-Day, you should consider learning it now.

  8. hojo says:

    That doesn’t explain why it’s out of key…

  9. Coligny says:

    She’s cranking it in reverse ?

  10. jediDude says:


  11. fightcube says:

    I was expecting so much more… sorry, I wanted to like it.

  12. vic says:

    “Professional LEGO player” … Now that’s a job title that makes me envious.

  13. Chris says:

    Pretty cool. Given the comments and the hokey actuation scheme, the sound is actually better than I anticipated. As a whole, more entertaining than Episode I.

  14. Rick 'Autre says:

    What are you looking for? Some kindd of grand operatic Perfection? For shame. Get off your duff and do a better one if ya don’t like it! I’m just dying to see your version! Then you can claim the right to b***h about it!

    • heatgap says:

      I’m with you here bud. Please don’t complain about something as epic as this.

      Sure it’s not at the height of Star Wars theme music perfection but that’s not the point. Did we bitch when the guys who made Star Wars floppy disk drive got the tempo wrong…noooo! So why bitch about something as cool as this!

  15. doug says:

    In the event I had a Lego set as I kid I can’t recall them, as I can the erector set Lincoln Logs and Tinker Toys. With no youthful reference please excuse me, I don’t get excited over project that use them.

  16. Le Samourai says:

    Some people will find any reason they can to be negative.

    This barrel is AWESOME.

  17. echodelta says:

    It’s not the tempo. It’s slop in the barrel drive, lots of backlash. They should have brushed up on the half a millennium of progress on drum memory. Worm drive! Gear trains have slop. Some of the finest examples came out of Germany.

  18. CPPCrispy says:

    Interesting. I like it. Personally I would have reversed the drum, so that the Lego’s come up from under the key activators. Thus the drum would rotate clockwise from the prospective of the camera in the video and the key activators would have been in such a way that the Lego’s would have come up from under the activator, the end that comes in contact with the Lego’s would go up, and the other end would go down, thus pressing the key.

  19. sandiegofoodreviews says:
  20. polossatik says:

    cool. that’s it. just kewl

  21. drock says:

    This one sounded a little better to me

  22. charliex says:

    Do a barrel roll ?

  23. Sebastian says:

    I think its in Munich in the Cinemaxx Cinema.

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