This is That

Canadian engineer invents world's first robot busker

Busking is hands-down Canada’s favourite art form and no one knows this better than mechanical engineer Brian Huddard. Huddard has created the world’s first robot that can busk, Buster the Busker.
Bologna, Italy - August 18, 2014: Street musician playing the flute on Piazza Maggiore in Bologna. Italy (iStock)

[Originally broadcast on Oct. 22/24, 2015]

Busking is hands-down Canada's favourite art form and no one knows this better than mechanical engineer Brian Huddard. Huddard has created the world's first robot that can busk, Buster the Busker.

Sitting on the ground, playing a tambourine with your hat out just won't cut it anymore.- Brian Huddard, mechanical engineer


"Buster can do almost anything," says Huddard," Anything from magic to improv comedy; playing the banjo to playing the pan flute. He loves the pan flute."

Not everyone is a fan of Buster, especially other buskers on Granville Island, where the robot performs.

"I make about half as much now that Buster's come along," says Michelle Starbird, a popular fire dancer, "I would love to see him unplugged."

In this profile, This Is That went to see Buster in action and wow the crowds.   


This is That is an award-winning satirical current affairs show that doesn't just talk about the issues, it fabricates them.