UVA Arts, University of Virginia

Vol 03 Fall 15 Library
Matthew Burtner


Perhaps the case for the environmental challenges we face as a world is best made by the music that world makes every day. That is the premise behind EcoAcoustics STAGE, a special project spearheaded by Matthew Burtner of the Music Department in collaboration with former Vice-President Al Gore’s Climate Reality Group, environmental arts non-profit EcoSono, and the UVa Center for Global Inquiry and Innovation. In order to help lay the creative groundwork for the project, Matthew Burtner traveled to Brazil to work with Al Gore on Climate Reality Leadership. Burtner then took his EcoAcoustic MUSI 3400 class into the Shenandoah National Park to study the aesthetics and science of the sounding world, using specialized recording equipment to capture the sounds of nature, including waterfalls and rock formations. The students combined these field recordings with scientific research and creative sound composition to create works that explore themes of sonic thought and action for global environmentalism. They shared their works as part of the “Making Noise” series at the Music Library, presented at Final Fridays, and are currently working on a webisode that chronicles the project.

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