Tune in to Norfolk’s natural habitats and listen in live with special online art performance

HomeSounds microphone in the wild for live-streaming (C) HomeSounds

HomeSounds microphone in the wild for live-streaming (C) HomeSounds - Credit: HomeSounds

Bring the outside in and tune in to an art performance with a difference which will give locked-down listeners the chance to hear the live sounds of Norfolk wildlife at home.

AHT HomeSounds (C) Assembly House Trust

AHT HomeSounds (C) Assembly House Trust - Credit: Assembly House Trust

People living under lockdown are being given the opportunity to listen in to nature in Norfolk by tuning in to live-streaming microphones across the county as part of an art performance this Thursday night.

As part of ASSEMBLY ONLINE, the free lockdown arts programme being run and funded by Norwich-based arts charity The Assembly House Trust, the HomeSounds project is inviting everyone to be an environmental listener at 7.30pm on Thursday April 16.

Created by Recast Music Education, the project teaches young people through field trips, workshops and sound-walks about the science of sound, the technology of recording and our acoustic habitat.

Participants will be able to hear live-streaming of sounds from natural habitats across the county.

Homesounds microphone (C) HomeSounds

Homesounds microphone (C) HomeSounds - Credit: HomeSounds

By developing their capacity to listen, participants on HomeSounds projects have the opportunity to explore the world of environmental sound for creative, therapeutic and educational purposes.

For this performance live-streaming microphones, installed by participants on the HomeSounds project at locations across Norfolk, offer the opportunity to experience one of these live acoustic habitats as it evolves.

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Sound artist Oliver Payne will improvise live with these streams and lead a discussion on the relationship between listening, health and well-being.

One of the primary aims of the HomeSounds project is to educate young people in the art of listening, particularly those for whom listening is difficult, or who may significantly benefit from a deeper understanding of how to listen.

HomeSounds microphone (C) HomeSounds

HomeSounds microphone (C) HomeSounds - Credit: HomeSounds

HomeSounds is opening the virtual classroom to everyone during lockdown to take part in the listening exercise.

To access Google Classroom, you will need a Google account. Once you have logged in at 7.30pm on April 16, click on the ‘+’ symbol in the top right hand corner, select the ‘join class’ option and input the following class code: 3s7awor.

In this classroom you will find a performance guide. Information is also available on The Assembly House Trust’s website

The HomeSounds project currently has four Live-Streaming microphones installed at sites across Norfolk. These include Titchwell Marsh (RSPB), Sheringham Park (National Trust), Pigneys Wood (Norfolk Wildlife Trust) and Grime’s Graves (English Heritage).

You can tune into all of these, and many more from around the world, by visiting the Locus Sonus Soundmap here.

Martin Scaiff is the founder and director of Recast Music Education CIC, is a music educator for over 20 years and is an active musician, field recordist and writer.

Oliver Payne is a practicing sound artist working with sculpture, recorded sound and installation. Recently, he was commissioned by New Geographies to produce a series of podcasts which include elements of field recording, interview, sound design and composition.