Alejandro Montes de Oca: Underwater Soundscape II (Ruissalo)

Underwater Soundscape II (Ruissalo) is an extract from a real time soundscape composition commissioned for the site-specific installation of Ruissalo Park (Turku, Finland) for the “Sonic Seascape Terraces” (project of Hanna Haaslahti and Marianne Decoster-Taivalkoski for “Turku 2011, European Capital of Culture”, Finland. Premiered on May 29th, Turku, Finland 2011). This soundscape composition is a counterpoint that interlace in space and time and that is conformed by natural soundscapes, human influenced soundscapes and abstract soundscapes that born from the transfiguration of the first two. The aim was that one can hear the real-time underwater soundscape of the seascape visible from a specific view-point. The view over the seascape is framed from the terrace to the place where a number of hydrophones are located, so that a viewer/listener standing at the terrace can link the seascape and the soundscape to each other. The task as composer was to emphasize the particularity of the underwater soundscape of the area. To do so, strategies such as selecting the material through the choice of precise points of hearing that provides particular information of the place has been used. The sounds used in this specific composition came from two harbors, the one in Ruissalo Park captures the boats passing by and one in the other side of Ruissalo Park (Pikisaari sailing club) captures the activity around the sailing club. To compose this work it has been used different electroacoustic techniques to reinforce certain acoustic qualities of the material to reveal its originality. The soundscape has be transformed and spatialized in real time through an application, developed by the composer, call Sonic Scape Tools (SST*). Soundscape studies and acoustic ecology form the scientific background of this creative work. Acoustic ecology is a rather new field of research dedicated to the study of the sound-based social interactions of living organisms. The canadien composer and researcher R. Murray Schafer created the term soundscape in the 1960´s in parallel to the term landscape. Soundscape refers to an acoustic environment in which listeners are immersed, including natural acoustic elements as well as those caused by human activities in a specific place of the landscape. *Max/msp application that analyzes, processes and mixes sound signals in real-time to create a live soundscape composition. Designed, developed and produced in collaboration with the Centre for Music and Technology at the Sibelius Academy.

Alejandro Montes de Oca (1980, Mexico City) is a composer, performer and sound artist. Inspired by the physical materiality of sound, our contemporary soundscape and different time perceptions, he focuses on organizing sounds in space and time with the use of self-made electroacoustic instruments and applications. Alejandro received a bachelor´s degree in guitar performance from the Superior School of Music, Mexico City, and a master´s degree in electroacoustic composition from the Royal School of Music in Stockholm. He studied computer music and media electronics in Vienna, and followed the ECMCT (European Course for Musical Composition with Technologies) Helsinki-Barcelona program, organized by the IRCAM. He has received commissions from the “Instrumenta Festival” (Mexico), IMEB (France), CDMC (Spain), ICST (Switzerland) and the Sonic Seascape Terraces project presented at “Turku 2011, European Capital of Culture”, as well as scholarships from the UNESCO-Aschberg, FONCA, the Cultural Minister of Spain and the Swedish Performing Rights Society (STIM). He was awarded the 10th Electroacoustic Composition Competition Musica Viva prize and the Franz Liszt Stipendium 2011 prize. His music has been released on various compilations and has been presented in different festivals and concerts in Europe and America.

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About EAH Project

The European Acoustic Heritage is aimed at discovering and enhancing the soundscapes of Europe, the different sounds that make up the imaginary world and personality of the places and environments as a part of the European common cultural heritage.

Uso y contenidos

El presente proyecto ha sido financiado con el apoyo de la Comisión Europea. Esta publicación (comunicación) es responsabilidad exclusiva de sus autores. La Comisión no es responsable del uso que pueda hacerse de la información aquí difundida.

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