In the early seventies the composer Murray Schafer founded the Soundscape Movement in Vancouver/Canada. Since then an increasing number of composers, sound experts and scientists have been working on research and ways of design of the acoustic/sound environment from ecological and/or artistical points of view.
More and more soundscapes and related compositions emerged, recently some of those in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut, i.e. „Soundscape New Delhi“ and „Soundscape Brasilia“.
Talking about Madrid: The city is shaped by approx. 5 million inhabitans and 2 million cars. It is said to be one of the loudest cities in Europe. The variety and the amount of sound is great and worthwhile analyzing. This phenomenon has been centered in the research of I.L. Barrio and J.L. Carles, Institute of Acoustics (CSIC), Madrid, for several years.
What is the sound of Madrid?
The „Soundscape Madrid“ intends to unite various facets of perception - the perception of the researcher, the ecologist, the composer and sound designer - and melt them together in one mutual composition („cadavre equis“); all that realized by a Spanish-German team.
Since June 1994 the participants have been collecting, selecting, combining and composing their sound materials. The final production took place in Madrid and Cologne, February 1995. „Madrid - a soundscape collective“ is the result of these combined sound works of the artists. It offers a complex and sophisticated reflection of the team´s ideas and makes the city acoustically available to the listener, opening the panorama of Madrid´s sound levels: „Discovering the city of the animated sun“.
Sabine Belz, Goethe Institut, Madrid