Soundscapes Lecture and Concert

Lecture, Wednesday November 24th, 15.00 h.

Westdeutscher Rundfunk Köln
Studio Akustische Kunst

Soundscapes voor 2000

In his presentation November 24th in Amsterdam at the Goethe Institute Klaus Schöning, director of the Studio Akustische Kunst at WDR, Cologne invites to a Soundscape Journey into the Studio Akustische Kunst. The spectrum ranges from 'soundscapes' of classical music to electroacoustic soundscapes of WDR realized by international soundartists, to imaginary soundscape compositions by Pierre Henry and John Cage and to the soundscape which the Studio Akustische Kunst will present as loudspeaker performance November 24th at the Rozen Theatre in Amsterdam: The prize-winning Winter Diary (1997) by R.Murray Schafer.

Concert, Wednesday November 24th, 20.00 h.

R. Murray Schafer
Winter Diary
Realisation: R. Murray Schafer
together with Claude Schryer
Production: WDR Studio Akustische Kunst 1997
Executive Producer: Klaus Schöning
Karl-Sczuka-Prize 1998

Loudspeaker Performance
Presented by Klaus Schöning
WDR Studio Akustische Kunst
Rozen Theater, Amsterdam
24 November 1999

R. Murray Schafer: "The origin of Winter Diary is a trip I made in rural Manitoba (Canada) in the winter of 1997. Together with Claude Schryer, who accompanied me as recordist, we travelled the roads, visiting small towns, farms, Indian reserves and national parks. The snow was deep and the temperature hovered somewhere between minus 15 and minus 40 degrees. The contrast between warm friendly interiors of homes, restaurants and churches with the bleak, silent spaces of the outdoors punctuated only by the wind, the passing of distant trains or the howling of Prairie dogs, is one of the main themes of the program for the Studio Akustische Kunst"

Statement by the jury of the Karl-Sczuka-Prize: "It is with great autonomy and imperturbability that Schafer draws the sound spectrum of a Canadian winter into his acoustic image. From the calm sequence of concise sound events an acoustic landscape emerges, almost spatial in its presence. To the point of noiselessness, of silence, everything audible is there concretely and non-arbitrarily. It is a work which ushers its listeners to a place of unhurried, patient listening, insists upon the wealth of nuances in acoustic perception, and takes a stand against sound refuse and staged hyperactivity."

Biography R. Murray Schafer, influential Canadian composer and pioneer in the area of international sound research. In his fundamental book The Tuning of the World (1977) he summarised his years of scientific work as a sound researcher at the Simon Frazer University in Vancouver, Canada. Schafer coined terms such as "acoustic design," "acoustic ecology," "schizophonia," "soundmark" and "soundscape." His most ambitious undertaking is the World Soundscape Project, dealing with the comparative investigation of soundscapes. The project was founded in 1971 and has led to a series of studies of aural perception, sound symbolism and noise pollution worldwide. It is an attempt to form a link between the artistic and scientific fields concerned with sound studies and to develop a combined discipline of "acoustic design." A cycle of his extensive musical-compositional work was summarised under the title Patria. For the Studio Akustische Kunst, Schafer has realised an annotated version of his Vancouver Soundscape as well as the WDR commissioned soundscapes Wolf Music (CBC/WDR) and Winter Diary.

Biography Klaus Schöning, artistic director and founder of the Studio Akustische Kunst / Studio Acoustic Art at WDR, Cologne, a centre of prolific production of Ars Acustica since 1969 and of media research in radio since 1963. The history of this atelier is the history of an open aesthetic concept and of an ongoing artistic development which is related to many art forms: Intermedia.
As executive producer he has commissioned more than 1000 works of soundart, including
about 60 soundscapes and Metropolis compositions and of broadcasts like features, documentaries, essays, conversations. Coined terms like Ars Acustica, Akustische Kunst and Ars multilingua. Thirty compositions produced by his editorship have been awarded international prizes. Director of experimental hörspiel - productions in Europe, USA and Australia. Author of broadcasts and publications on the history and aesthetics of acoustic art as well as of several anthologies and books. Editor of the Wergo-CD series Ars Acustica. The richness of Acoustic art with productions of the Studio Akustische Kunst; the riverrun CD - edition Voicings/Soundscapes, and the complete John Cage - Diary CD - edition. Producer of the first intercontinental satellite sound bridges in the history of radio Köln - San Francisco/Kyoto (1987/1993) by Bill Fontana, as well as the 31-hour nonstop-broadcast of the RTE/WDR marathon project Ulysses / James Joyce (1982) and the 24-hour live broadcast NachtCageTag (1987).
Numerous teaching and writer-in-residence assignments, lectures, performances and workshops in Europe, North/South-America, Japan and Australia, often in cooperation with Goethe Institutes. Initiator and artistic director of the WDR Festivals Acustica International since 1985 Curator for several international sound installations, e.g. documenta 8, Kassel; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Biennale in Venecia; the MusicTriennale Cologne; Fluxus in Germany, 1962-94; the Phonurgia Nova Festivals, Arles; Mills College, Oakland/California; the European Cultural City Copenhagen ; the Museum for Intermedia Art, Roskilde.
For several years the first chairman of the Ars Acustica committee of the EBU. Initiator of the international WDR Ars Acustica competition and the Prix Ars Acustica.
Awards: 1983, the Berliner Kunstpreis der Akademie der Künste, (Film/Radio/Television Grant), and 1993, the Media Art Prize from the ZKM, Karlsruhe. the Centre for Art and Media Technology.