You are invited to participate in World Listening Day 2016, an annual global event held on July 18.
The purposes of World Listening Day are to:
World Listening Day 2016’s theme, “Sounds Lost and Found,” calls on reminiscing, listening and observing what changes in our soundscapes have occurred in recent decades—be it language, nature, technology, music or even silence itself. For “Sounds Lost and Found,” we invite you to dig into crates of vinyl and cassettes, dive into digital archives, and engage deeply with memories and unheard languages to rediscover or identify these “lost sounds.” In doing so, “Sounds Lost and Found” hopes to spotlight the need for effective and accessible conservatory efforts to be implemented to preserve some of these sounds—whether those efforts include archival projects, changing our daily practices or supporting the preservation of indigenous languages and engaging with the keepers of and archiving fading oral traditions where that seems impossible. We can protect and celebrate sounds whose vitality can be vulnerable and fragile.
World Listening Project, Midwest Society for Acoustic Ecology and Biosphere Soundscapes invite you to participate in World Listening Day 2016 on Monday, July 18, and through the week of July 16th-22nd. Some suggestions on how you can participate and organize include:
Our planet continues to change due to human involvement and interventions. People evolve. Cities morph. Technologies advance. We can hear the planet changing. Our soundscapes reflect evolution; whether created by humans, machines or nature the shifting presence and absence of sounds is affected by human activity in natural and industrial worlds.
Cities’ sonic identities are continually fluctuating as residential and commercial infrastructures develop. The resultant social dynamics of industrialization and gentrification sponsor variegated relationships between people and the public and private places they occupy.
Humans’ complex interactions with nature have encroached upon Earth’s autonomy and her anonymity. Phenomena such as pollution, deforestation and global warming are manifestations of natural processes; they are the aftershocks of industrial pursuits. Swaths of land have been decimated, dismantling animal ecosystems for human consumption and destruction. This reckless, shortsighted mode of interacting with non-human life has forced the retreat and extinction of many species, eliminating their sounds until there is silence.
Technological advances over the past several centuries, particularly in recent decades, have been astronomical. Of late, machines and media become obsolete before we have even become proficient in using them. These advances have impacted the acoustics of commercial and residential spaces with newer versions of devices designed with quietness in mind Sounds produced by older models are noticeably more obtrusive. Most of these advancements can be seen as positive, though some sounds we were accustomed to or fond of have become less prevalent or been silenced in our relentless push toward progress ad infinitum.
Some Questions of Inquiry
The theme for World Listening Day 2016 was developed by Nigerian sound artist Emeka Ogboh (@goslowlagos). Emeka is co-founder of the Video Art Network Lagos and works primarily with sound and video to explore ways of understanding cities as cosmopolitan spaces with their unique characters.
Birdsong has inspired composers from medieval times to the present day. Led by internationally acclaimed sound artist and composer, Ros Bandt, this project brings together the sounds of local box ironbark birds together with European birdsongs from Couperin to Biber and from the troubadour Bornelh to Blavet.
Performed by Trio Avium, Birdsong will premiere at the 2015 Castlemaine State Festival with Ros Bandt (recorders, soundscapes), Vienna-based baroque violinist Cynthia O’Brien, and Ruth Wilkinson (recorders, viola da gamba). As a modern take on birdsong, this project includes the first recording of the well known and much played Flight, Ruth's Magpie Remix and Fratta, a new piece for Cynthia telling the story of how the baby kestrels abandoned in her house in Fratta were saved. Trio Avium plays on the finest baroque instruments including recorders from the nearby workshops of Fred Morgan and Jo-anne Saunders.
Purchase Birdsong from the hearing places Catalogue.
Rainforest Listening is an augmented reality project that layers rainforest soundscapes in iconic urban environments to inspire ecological engagement. Listeners access the sounds via mobile devices and sculpt their own soundscape as they walk through Paris.
At COP21 we brought the rainforests of the world to Paris and encouraged global leaders to listen to nature and take climate action. Rainforest Listening showcases one of the most critical environments on earth, the Amazon Rainforest. The installation features pristine sounds recorded in a diversity of ecosystems including lowland tropical rainforest with abundant wildlife. Listeners can hear the rich biodiversity of insects and birdlife and those who venture deeper into the sound maps can discover the endangered Amazon River dolphins or elusive howler monkeys hidden in iconic locations throughout Paris.
The Eiffel Tower and surrounding parklands were transformed into an immersive sonic experience layering rainforest soundscapes over the breathtaking views of the city. Each observatory platform of the Eiffel Tower was interpreted as the four distinct layers of tropical rainforest vegetation through immersive soundscapes and original sonic art created exclusively for COP21 by multi-award winning Australian artist Leah Barclay.
Over 100 sounds were planted across Paris during COP21 at major side events including Petit Palais for Earth To Paris – Le Hub, The Global Landscapes Forum, The Hub Culture Paris Pavilion and throughout Le Bourget.
To experience Rainforest Listening in Paris you need a mobile device and headphones. You can access the soundscapes via two free mobile applications Recho and Podwalk, with Recho being our core application for iOS and android users. The installations run 24 hours a day and can be accessed anytime throughout COP21. If you would like to join a guided sound walk or meet our team on the ground in Paris, please use the contact page on our website or follow #RainforestListening on twitter.
Rainforest Listening is produced by Rainforest Partnership, an international NGO founded with a mission to protect tropical rainforests by partnering with people at global and local levels to create lasting solutions to deforestation. Rainforest Listening is supported by HubCulture, the UN Foundation and Earth to Paris.