The Architecture of the Soundscape

Coach House, Green College, University of British Columbia

For more information, please contact Alex Fisher

A copy of the programme and details of how to get to Green College can be downloaded here.

Read the workshop report.

#EMSoundsUBC as told on Twitter.


This workshop examines how sounds and spaces shaped early modern identities. Speakers will consider how different locales and national settings mediate how sounds were received. We will address how the sounds of the city, or the country house, or the cloister, governed daily life. The workshop will also consider the role sound had in the pageantry of power, diplomacy, theatrical spaces and religious ceremony. We will explore how the acoustical circumstances of performance differ in different spaces, and whether there is a difference between the ‘staged’ sounds heard in the church, the playhouse, or a musical performance in comparison to the ‘incidental’ sounds of the street.





Thursday, 21 March

17:00–18:30 Pre-workshop public lecture:

“What Is (Are) Sound Studies and What Shape Is It (Are They?) In Now?”
Bruce Smith (University of Southern California)

(reception to follow)


Friday, 22 March

10:00–11:00 Coffee and welcome

11:00–12:30 Panel 1: The English Renaissance

Bruce Smith (University of Southern California), respondent

“Soundscapes of Worship in Early Modern English Parish Churches”, John Craig (Simon Fraser University)

“Vibratory Resonances in Topkapi Palace and the English Renaissance Theatre”, Jennifer Linhart-Wood (Folger Shakespeare Library, St. Mary’s College of Maryland)

12:30–14:00 Lunch on own

14:00–16:00 Panel 2: Early Modern Germany

Niall Atkinson (University of Chicago), respondent

“Notes on ‘Soundscape’ and Confessional Space in Early Modern Germany”, Alex Fisher (University of British Columbia)

“Lay Appropriation of Bells and Belfries in Catholic and Lutheran Communities of the Eighteenth Century”, Duane Corpis (New York University Shanghai)

“Towers, Timekeeping, and Sound in German Urban Baroque Culture”, Tanya Kevorkian (Millersville University)

16:00–16:30 Coffee break

16:30–18:00 Panel 3: The Global Soundscape

Emilie K. M. Murphy (University of York), respondent

“African-Jamaican Soundscapes of Death”, Linda Sturtz (Macalester College)

“Listening as an Innu-French Contact Zone in the Jesuit Relations”, Olivia Bloechl (University of Pittsburgh)

18:00–19:30 Workshop reception, Green College

20:00 Workshop dinner, Wolf & Hound Pub, 3617 West Broadway


Saturday, 23 March

9:00–10:00 Coffee and continental breakfast

10:00–11:30 Special presentation
“Acoustic Ecology and the World Soundscape Project”, Barry Truax (Simon Fraser University)

11:30–13:30 Lunch on own

13:30–15:00 Roundtable discussion
Rachel Willie (Liverpool John Moores University), moderator

15:00 Workshop close

19:30 Early Music Vancouver presents Blue Heron Guillaume de Machaut: Remède de Fortune
Christ Church Cathedral, 690 Burrard Street. Tickets available through Early Music Vancouver.

The University of British Columbia acknowledges that we gather on the
traditional, ancestral, unceded territory of the Musqueam people.


Scroll to Top