This past weekend we explored how drones could soon replace pyrotechnics at festivals in the near future, and now, they could even be helping the artists we go to watch.

In an effort to showcase how far drone technology has come, Daniel Mellinger and Alex Kushleyev, two bright engineers from Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science, created an orchestra of drones that could perform on live instruments.

Each small drone controls a string, a drum, a keyboard key and any other singular facet of a given instrument. By themselves, they aren’t much, but when controlled in sync with the others, these drones create real music.

While the initial performance is very basic and lacks true musical depth, it still marks an important milestone in what drones can do in our everyday lives. This video, shot in 2012, is already small in comparison to what drones can do in today’s ever expanding world.

As drones grow in intelligence and precision, how long will it be until we start to see drone musical performances? Can they really reach a level that could captivate us in the same emotional manner human performers do?

Check out the video below for an idea of the potential musical drones hold for the future: