exploring the role of sound in natural and cultural environments

Tag: Christopher Preissing

Thank you, Christopher Preissing!

Thank you, Christopher Preissing!

Please join us in thanking Christopher Preissing for his leadership and involvement during his term as Co-chair of the MSAE. Over the years, Chris has contributed his time and effort to growing the listening community at large, and has made an enduring impact on MSAE. Chris will continue as a valued member of the MSAE as he directs NON:op Open Opera Works, an art non-profit in Chicago.

We are grateful for all of your work and look forward to following and supporting all of your future endeavors that we are confident will be nothing short of successes!

Sound Art Installations for Ear Taxi Festival, October 5-10, Chicago

Alongside the adventuresome concerts, lectures, and artist receptions being presented at the first-ever Ear Taxi Festival, October 5-10, 2016, will be five innovative sound installations created by award-winning Chicago composers and mounted around the city throughout the Festival. These free and open-to-the-public installations incorporate video, […]

Report: World Listening Day 2015 Soundwalk at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore

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Soundwalk starting at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore’s Miller Trail.

Report, photos, and audio by Christopher Preissing

On Saturday, July 18 (World Listening Day 2015), Dan Godston led a soundwalk at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore’s Miller Trail. In spite of predictions for extremely hot and humid temperatures, nine hearty listeners braved the heat on what turned out to be a beautiful warm and breezy day.

Starting at the Paul H. Douglas Center for Environmental Education, Dan introduced R. Murray Schafer and his seminal book, Soundscape: Our Sonic Environment and the Tuning of the World, and in keeping with this year’s H2O theme, Rachel Carson’s The Edge of the Sea, and Jerry Dennis’ The Living Great Lakes. National Park Service Ranger Steve Rodriguez hosted the event on behalf of the IDNL, and provided materials with which the soundwalkers created text and visual images based on passages from the books. We have been collaborating with IDNL on programs at the Douglas Center annually since 2010!

To introduce the soundwalk Dan described two types of engagement: the first consisting of active listening, the second including active engagement with the environment. On top of a small dune through which the trail passes, we stopped to make sound by hand with leaves, wood, and the sand at our feet. Following that acoustic interaction with the environment, we walked over the wood bridge that spans the marsh.

Audio recording of the soundwalk:

The “H2O” theme for World Listening Day 2015 drew attention to water as a metaphor and reality; essential for life and now becoming the greatest commodity of the 21st century. At the end of the bridge, Dan had left two containers for pond water and branches with which to make sound and feel the water. In both instances soundwalkers participated joyfully, and reported these interactions as an important component of the experience. “When we were making sounds it felt very childlike, which brought to mind a lot of what kids’ play is just making sound for the joy of making sound.”

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We stopped to listen and make sound by hand with leaves, wood, and the sand at our feet.
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Eight of our nine hearty listeners back at the Paul H. Douglas Center for Environmental Education. Dan Godston is seated on the left.

Sound walkers described listening without the other senses as “a good way to keep your focus;” that “there’s competition between the senses” as well as “for what you want to listen to;” and that “it was sensory overload.” Some additional comments include: “Cottonwood trees can be very loud.” “It’s very squeaky when you walk.” “I never paid attention but different trees make different sounds. I wondered how the birds and the insects take cues from that and how it affects what they do.” There was also a brief discussion around how our ears and brains actively filter various sounds in the environment, whereas microphones hear everything.

More photos are in our Album at https://goo.gl/photos/mGkjy3QrRnFWi3bc7

 

2014 Year-in-Review

MSAE 2014 year-in-review, plus what’s ahead in 2015. We hope this New Year has started off well as we take time to reflect and take note of our activities and prospects. Happily, the MSAE had an extremely productive 2014. Highlights of the year and into […]

Mixage Fou Chicago Sound Bank Call for Submissions – Deadline – September 27

Beginning October 4 the Mixage Fou Sound Bank will be available for the creation of original sound pieces. Works may be music compositions, sound narration, soundscapes, crazy mixes, etc. The duration is limited to 80 seconds. The deadline for submission of original sound pieces is November 16.

Happy 2013! Announcing New Members, Journal, Honors & Awards

We hope your new year is off to a great start. You may not have heard it, but a lot of things are happening in the Midwest Society for Acoustic Ecology (MSAE). Here’s a list that includes some things you can do:

  • Now is the time to renew your MSAE-ASAE membership, if you haven’t already. Memberships end annually on December 31. Please visit our “About” to renew or become a new member!
  • Publication of the latest issue of Soundscape: The Journal of Acoustic Ecology, our print journal was long-delayed, and mailed to 2011 members last September. Contact info@mwsae.org if you have not received your copy.
  • MSAE member and co-chair Jay Needham became the new President of the American Society for Acoustic Ecology (ASAE), last August when Eric Leonardson became President of the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology (WFAE). E-mail Jay at info@acousticecology.us
  • Chicago-based composer Christopher Preissing takes over as new MSAE co-chair serving with MSAE co-chair, and WFAE President Eric Leonardson. E-mail Chris at cpreissing@mwsae.org and Eric at info@mwsae.org
  • The WFAE’s online newsletter has changed from a bi-monthly to a quarterly publication cycle. The read the January-March front page features Eric Leonardson’s “President’s Report,” and updates on local, national, and international events among our nine WFAE Affiliates, and others in the field of acoustic ecology. Please submit your news for calendar listing, resources, and feature article ideas you may have. Check out the many conference calls for papers, shows, publishing opportunities, grants, residencies, jobs, etc. E-mail Gary Ferrington at wfae.newsletter@gmail.com
  • In his WFAE Affiliate Report , ASAE President Jay Needham welcomed and thanked new, returning, and outgoing ASAE Board members. Former ASAE President and current MSAE co-chair, Eric Leonardson serves now as ASAE Representative (liaison) of the ASAE and WFAE. Kenya Williams is new ASAE Membership Coordinator. Read about the rest on the ASAE web page.
  • WFAE’s Journal Editorial Committee is doing double-duty to bring the publication cycle of Soundscape back in sync, by completing its 2012 print journal this spring, while planning its next steps for this year’s journal. MSAE member and SIUC Professor Phylis Johnson is leading the effort, replacing Hildegard Westerkamp as Interim Editor-In-Chief. E-mail Phylis at soundscape-editor@wfae.net
  • The Soundscape: Journal of Acoustic Ecology web page was recently updated. Download back issues free, from the first publication in 2000 up to, and including the recent 2011 issue.
  • MSAE realizes it mission through local initiatives such as the World Listening Project (WLP), which has and continues to gain worldwide interest and appreciation since it was founded in 2008. Beginning in February the WLP’s website will  feature a series of blog posts about changing soundscapes, new listening practices, new recording techniques, reflections on recent events, interdisciplinary connections to acoustic ecology, and other topics relevant to field recording and concerns with the sonic environment. Several new posts will be published each month. The selected “bloggers” are from around the world, invited by MSAE member and WLP co-founder Dan Godston, who initiated the guest blogging project.
  • MSAE co-chair Eric Leonardson was honored to be a Copeland Fellow at Amherst College, where he resides from January through May, 2013.
  • MSAE co-chair Christopher Preissing was awarded a Pritzker Foundation Endowed Fellowship for his recent (October-November, 2012) residency at Djerassi Resident Artist Program. He is currently a Fellow at his third artist residency at VCCA: Virginia Center for the Arts, from February through early-March, 2013.
  • MSAE member Jay Needham was honored to have his field recordings of Panamanian Neotropical rainforests be part of the Biomuseo, a new biodiversity museum in Panama designed by Frank Gehry.
  • There’s more to tell, and we want you to tell us your membership news. For the most up-to-date news please visit and use our Facebook Page, and follow us on Twitter!

Listening Forward to a Happy New 2013!

—Christopher Preissing and Eric Leonardson, MSAE Co-chairs