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Sound as art comes to Aberdeen

Experimental music tops the bill at contemporary music event

The event, SoundAsArt: Blurring of the Boundaries, is being co-presented by local artists group urbanNovember, and the Department of Music at the University of Aberdeen.

The conference, which will run from November 24 – 26, is part of Northeast Scotland’s contemporary music festival sound, which was launched in 2005 to rave reviews. sound is organised by the University of Aberdeen and Woodend Arts Association (WAA) and was set up to promote contemporary music of all genres from classical and traditional, to jazz and experimental.

The SoundAsArt conference has attracted a group of world-renowned sound artists who will travel from as far afield as Italy, France, Germany, and the United States to perform at the three-day event. Conference participants will be able to take advantage of a packed line-up featuring talks, installations, soundwalks, and performances. Portions of the conference will broadcast live on 360TV at

SoundAsArt Director, Bill Thompson, of the University’s Music Department, said he was delighted to be welcoming the biggest names in the global sound art scene to Aberdeen.

He said: “There has been a growing fascination over the past few years with the emerging art form, Sound Art, which has become increasingly popular within arts groups and academia. The conference will celebrate the blurring of boundaries between experimental music and sound art, and we are looking forward to sharing an exciting and eclectic mix of experiences with Aberdeen audiences.”

Among the biggest names the conference has attracted is award-winning German sound artist, Christina Kubisch, a highly respected scholar and artist whose compilations have earned her some of the world’s most prestigious awards in her field.

“I am really thrilled that Christina Kubisch will be coming from Germany to join us for SoundAsArt. It will be a privilege to welcome her to Aberdeen and to share in her wealth of experience in sound art. Her visit will be a memorable one and is a real highlight of the programme,” said Bill.

Another well-known musician who will take part in the conference is renowned composer and academic Jonty Harrison, who plays a seminal role in the musical life of the UK. He has received several prizes for his electroacoustic music compositions, which are performed and broadcast worldwide.

Other well-known names who will be taking part in next month’s event include: Rajesh Mehta, Keith Rowe, Karen Hay, Patrick Keenan, Giancarlo Toniutti, and James Wyness.

The conference will also feature the University of Aberdeen’s Head of Music, Dr Pete Stollery, who is also a director of the sound festival. His acousmatic music will be featured in a concert on the Sunday afternoon of the conference, including work by the Scottish group invisiblEARts which he co-founded in 1996.

Dr Stollery said: “It is a real coup to have attracted such a variety of performers and speakers to Aberdeen for this weekend and the whole event shows how Aberdeen, through the work of the University and sound, is becoming a centre for deep discussion and performance of new and emerging sound art.”

The event is free and open to all. It is being held in partnership with the University of Aberdeen, with support from Aberdeen City Council, the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Education, and the School of Education.

SoundAsArt will run from Friday, November 24, to Sunday, November 26, at the MacRobert Building, University of Aberdeen. For further information and registration, log on to: or email Bill Thompson at:

Bill Thompson, Director of SoundAsArt: Blurring of the Boundaries, is available for interview today (Monday, October 30). Please contact Jenni Massie, Communications Officer, on 01224 272013, to arrange.


Notes to Editors

Issued by the Communications Team, Office of External Affairs, University of Aberdeen, King's College, Aberdeen. Tel: (01224) 272014.

Issued on: Monday 30th of October 2006

Ref: 2095soundart

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