Looking back at Transformations of the Audible Symposium

Looking back into the Transformations of the Audible Symposium - All lectures and discussions available online

The symposium Transformations of the Audible, held in May 2019, was a unique gathering of international scholars and artists from different fields that dealt with how we listen and how contemporary artistic practices intervene in how we listen. The symposium gathered a wide range of inputs, from the field of contemporary composition and the use of sound in the arts to the perspective of early music performance and historical investigations on the genealogy of the cultural and technological conditions that inform how we listen.

Apart from internationally acclaimed musicology and sound studies scholars like Brian Kane (Yale University), Julia Kursell (Universiteit van Amsterdam) and Penelope Gouk (University of Manchester) and composersCatherine Lamb and Joanna Bailie among several other international guests, the symposium featured the presence of composer and 2019 Sonology Visiting Professor Peter Ablinger and gathered faculty staff from the Royal Conservatoire as well as lecturers andPhD candidates from the Academy of Creative and Performing Arts in Leiden University. The symposium was a transdisciplinary event in which talks and discussions were coupled to artistic presentations and concerts. Some of those included the dutch premiereof works by Peter Ablinger performed by Ensemble Modelo62, as well as works developed on a workshop led by Peter Ablinger with students from the Composition, Art Science and Sonology departments.

The Symposium was particularly meaningful in bringing up how modes in which listening occurs emerge within specific collective configurations, they are nurtured by ways in which people interact and by the infrastructures and tools involved in these contexts. Examples of that range from Elizabeth Dobbin’s presentation on the conventions and protocols that informed the relationship between composers, performers and listeners in the context of 17th century french opera, to the development of one of the first technologies of sound broadcasting at the end of the XIXth century that Melissa van Drie elaborated upon on her talk about the “Teatrophone”. The series of diverse panels and discussions were also particularly fruitful in exposing how different contemporary artists, coming for example from the domains of theatre, the visual arts or musical practice focus and deal with different aspects of how listening takes place.

The symposium was initiated and curated by Sonology staff and ACPA PhD Candidate and Policy Advisor Gabriel Paiuk.

On the 14th of April an Online ARC session took place, dedicated to the presentation of work carried out at the Institute of Sonology at the Royal Conservatoire. Four students from the second-year research master's at the Institute of Sonology did a 15-minute presentation of their work and engaged in a discussion. For more information click here.

Take a look at a selection of presentations of the Transformations of the Audible Symposium below.

Works from Master students in Sonology, Composition and Art Science

Peter Ablinger

Penelope Gouk

Linnea Semmerling

Jed Wentz

Heloisa Amaral


To see the full list of presentations click here.