Who: Mutetelenu Kalama
Description: When young reporters from the African continent take to the airwaves they don’t only address their peers and community. They also bring out the voices of others who are on the margins. Young radio reporters offer fresh perspectives and compassionate solutions as they advocate for youth rights, opportunities and services. For them radio skills are life skills and a way to navigate to a brighter future.
Who: Salvador Jiminez + Eucaris Jiminez + Quyen Nguyen
Description: Since 2016, The Urbano Fellows and artist Salvador Jiménez-Flores have designed and developed the Nomadic Civic Sculpture, an interactive and adaptable mobile sculpture used to explore themes of The Common and The Other. In each iteration, the project has allowed the Urbano Project to share stories, observations and research from one part of Boston to another. In this session, the presenters are eager to share Sound Bites of Egleston, a multi-media mural that captures the history, essence and current struggles of Egleston communities. The exterior walls of the sculpture will be illustrated with a mural depicting Egleston Square, including its history, various landmarks and the people who live and work there. Inside, personal anecdotes from community members will be showcased through audio pieces and portraits. This overall piece will represent the seen and unseen aspects of Egleston and ensure that the voices of often unheard community members will be recognized.
Who: Abby Dobson
Description: This multimedia performance session and discussion of songs (both original and re- interpreted) inspired by progressive social movements, including Say Her Name and Black Lives Matter, and author Audre Lorde’s collection of essays entitled “Sister Outsider”, will reflect on the potential of music to inspire empathy for marginalized Black women and girls. Through the performance and talk presentation, the presenter seeks to engage in a historical remembering/re-membering of black women’s voices, struggles, sacrifices, resilience, modes of resistance and joy. Exploring the connection between art and politics, the session will also interrogate the role of the artist as citizen and elucidate how music and performance can function as tools for cultivating empathy to inspire action towards transformative social change.
Who: Jonas Kirkegaard
Description: The word overheard has two contrasting meanings. It both refers to the situation where we do not pay attention to what we are supposed to hear, as well as the situation in which we vaguely hear something that was not intended for us. At this session, participants will learn about the research project The Overheard – staging overhearing as an ecological mode of listening. The Overheard is a part of the program for European Capital of Culture, Aarhus 2017, by offering several different listening experiences in the form of thematic live concerts, sound installations and a soundscape webpage. We present sound sculptures at different locations – and connect the locations in real time through an online mixer, where you can mix live audio streams. In the session, the presenter will demonstrate the creative and reflective aspects of The Overheard aiming at opening a discussion on how to critically reflect on our sound surroundings. In this way, the presenter aims to expand Brandon Labelle’s understanding of the overheard as a generative and messy field of possibilities into the area of sound art in public space. An expansion that allows for an ecological approach focused on the multisensory and the atmosphere and raising issues around intimacy and surveillance.
Who: Jake Levin + Amar Bakshi
Session Title: Phonos: A Live Audio Escape into Another World
Description: What does it mean to share a live, public, unmediated audio environment with someone somewhere around the world? Shared_Studios will describe their work with Phonos, a free, unmediated, live aural link between disparate publics. Installed at ground level, passersby can talk to those in a distant location or just listen to the sounds that surround them. When we connect to others around the world, what dynamics are at play? What are the political considerations in live audio pairings between locations? What is the power dynamic between countries with significant economic disparities? What are the voyeuristic implications of hearing a public place that is 3000 miles away? What are the educational opportunities (can you take an audio field trip)? What impact does the audio quality have, and who controls the volume? Who gets to choose which site a community hears? Who, if anyone, is listening in a central location? These are all questions we hope to explore in this presentation at Listening to the City. An accompanying interactive installation will be set up at MIT for participants to engage with.