O+A, Bruce Odland and Sam Auinger have been observing the urban soundscape and making sound installations in public spaces around the world for more than 20 years. They have recently found a way to share these observations in a performance piece that deals with perception, memory and the failure of the "sonic commons". Based on their unique dual binaural recording process, (4ears),this 40 minute performance immerses the audience in an extremely detailed spatial and surreal 4 dimensional audio environment. To this they add fragmentary visual clues playing compositional games with the difference between how our eyes and ears really decode space and how it usually happens in films. One longtime observer of their work, Daniel Oppenheim of IBM research reported the following. "I've heard you talk about sound in the cities and what it does for years but this performance is the first time I couldn't avoid getting it completely". The piece brings to the foreground issues of why our soundscape sounds like it does, and how it affects us and allows the audience to hear the city the way that both O+A hear it-simultaneously. This piece is intended to be the first half of an evening followed by a round table discussion with relevant experts in fields of perception, urban studies, psychoacoustics, architecture, economics, medicine, the environment and other related fields.
The room is split in half with O+A at a small table at the center lit by laptop screens and a small desk lamp. Overhead is a dual sided small projection screen. The audience is split in half and faces each other, flanked by two flat screens at the centerline. 4 high quality full range speakers are at the corners pointing in. 4 small speakers are at the center pointing out at the audience. (not shown here).
Gear: O+A provide: dual sided screen laptops audio interface Venue provides: small quiet video projector at least 1024x768 and extended VGA cable to laptops at center adjustable projector stand vocal microphone on stand 2 flat screens at least 36" diagonal, video splitter, cable running to laptops at center 4 high quality full range speakers such as D&B c series or equivalant 4 small monitor speakers mixing desk, analog or 96k digital O+A need 5 channels of line and 1 microphone at the center 2 matched boom stands, and 1 7ft long cross piece for suspension of center screen Time: 1 day setup, recording new material, editing 2nd day rehearsal, performance and round table.