Pi day is celebrated on March 14 each year! Its date (3/14) resembles the approximation of the mathematical symbol of Pi. Pi (often represented by the lower-case Greek letter π), is one of the most well-known mathematical constants. It is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. For instance, the distance around the edge of any circle is slightly more than three times the distance across.
Pi has interested people around the world for over 4,000 years. For that reason, many mathematicians – from Fibonacci, Newton, Leibniz, and Gauss – have attempted to calculate its digits. Pi is an irrational number, that is to say a decimal with no end and no repeating pattern.
Some composers have embarked on a journey to understand Pi in a different way, interchanging numbers with notes to play beautiful compositions.
One composer, Lars Erikson, composed the Pi Symphony in the early 1990s. The Pi symphony is an orchestral work whose melodic content is derived from the transcendental number Pi. The base of the natural logarithms, ‘e,’ is also used as a melody.
Jim Zamerski also worked on a composition he called “The Melody of Pi,” using 226 digits, utilizing the 12 tones in music as a base to compose a Pi waltz.
Many others have set Pi to music, utilizing a variety of instruments and tunes. It’s incredible that this perplexing mathematical formula is also the foundation of artistic creativity and diversity.
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