Study Day on Acoustic Cities


The interdisciplinary research groups Recomposing the CityUrban Rhythms Network, and Theatrum Mundi will co-host a Study Day on Acoustic Cities in the Faculty of Music, University of Oxford.

The Study Day will be devoted to exploring a wide variety of issues and practices related to urban sound: city symphonies, acoustic architectures, the politics of sound and noise mapping, intersections between sound art and urban design, sound and pedagogy in architecture and urban studies, and the challenges of acoustic planning, among other pertinent issues. 

The event will bring together internationally leading as well as emerging practitioners and theorists who work across such disciplines as music, architecture, film, and urban studies. Speakers will include Richard Sennett (author of The Craftsman and Practicing Culture), Ed Hughes and Lizzie Thynne (creators of Brighton: Symphony of a City), Katarzyna Krakowkiak (St Johns Sound Artist-in-Residence), and composer/sound artist Keith Obadike, among many others.  The aim of the Study Day is not only to share recent work but to ignite conversations across the urban humanities--and to probe the possibilities of urban practice as it evolves in connection to sound and music. 

Registration / sold out

Sponsors: AHRC | Faculty of Music, University of Oxford | TORCH Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities



9.30   Coffee & Registration

10.00 Welcome remarks. Prof Gascia Ouzounian (Music/Oxford) and Professor Laura Marcus (English/Oxford)

10.15-11.30   Session 1: The New City Symphony

Chair: Professor Laura Marcus, ‘Introducing the Cinematic City Symphony’

Prof Ed Hughes (Music/Sussex) and Lizzy Thynne (Media and Film/Sussex), ‘Brighton: Symphony of a City

--  Coffee break --

11.45-1.00 PM. Session 2. Recomposing the City: Sound Mapping and Acoustic Planning

Chair: Ruth Bernatek (Bartlett School of Architecture)

Prof Gascia Ouzounian (Music/Oxford), ‘The Acoustic City: The Politics of Mapping Sound and Noise’

Dr Lola San Martin (Music/Oxford), ‘Sonic Borders and the Aural Mapping of Spain’

Conor McCafferty (Sonic Arts/Queen's University Belfast), ‘Sound Mapping and Urban Pedagogy’

Dr Sarah Lappin (Architecture/Queen's University Belfast), ‘The Sound-Considered City: An Advice Note’

--  Lunch  --

2.00-3.00 PM  Session 3. Urban Rhythms: Three Cities (Paris, Turin, London)

Chair: Professor Laura Marcus

Dr Lola San Martin (Music/Oxford), ‘Introduction to Urban Rhythms: Avant-Gardes in Paris’

Dr Harriet Boyd-Bennett (Music/Nottingham), 'Work and Song in an Italian City'

Christabel Stirling (Music/Oxford), 'Voice Memos from the Dancefloor'

3.15-4.15 PM Session 4. Sound Artists in Conversation

Chair: Prof Jason Stanyek

Dr Katarzyna Krakowiak, sound artist & architecture researcher (Poland)

Dr Matilde Meireles, sound artist & soundscape researcher (Portugal)

Professor Keith Obadike, sound artist & researcher in new media (USA)

4.30-5.30 Session 5. Theatrum Mundi: Unresolved Acoustics

Roundtable discussion led by Professor Richard Sennett and Dr John Bingham-Hall

-- Wine Reception --


Urban Rhythms Network

Contact name: Dr Lola San Martin Arbide

Contact email:

Audience: Open to all