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Learning Through Listening
World Listening Day Soundwalk and Screening
July 15 @ 7pm Online Event and July 18 @ 7pm In-Person Event
Warbler’s Roost, 3785D Eagle Lake Road, South River
General $12, Advance Registration Required

NAISA's contribution to World Listening Day 2023 features a SOUNDwalk exploring the mid-summer soundscape of Deer Lake in Lount Township (22 KM west of South River) as well as a screening of Listening (with Hildegard Westerkamp) by filmmakers Mike Hoolboom and Heather Frise and Accidental Wilderness by media and sound artist Alëna Korolëva.

The online presentation will include a Q&A with the artists. Hundreds of organizations and thousands of people from six continents have participated in World Listening Day since its inception in 2010. The annual grass roots event is about engaging with important questions related to listening, ecology, and the future. Visit the World Listening Day website to host a World Listening Day event in your home region.

I. Listening (with Hildegard Westerkamp) by Mike Hoolboom and Heather Frise
A short biographical video of iconic Vancouver composer and sound ecologist Hildegard Westerkamp. She was the only woman to participate in the original version of the World Soundscape project that not only brought new ears to city life, but laid the foundation for noise bylaws/pollution standards, radically upending traditional notions of music, the role of the composer, and found new uses for the portable tape recorder. In addition, Hildegard has brought the art of sound walking to groups around the world, and in these face-to-face encounters she has formulated a deep feminist ecology rooted in the body. This experimentalist short offers a place for the viewer to listen, conjuring the space of listening as the necessary precondition for personal and societal change.
II. Accidental Wilderness by Alëna Korolëva
A selections of pieces from Korolëva's album of field recording-based compositions will be presented. The pieces grew from listening to the sounds of the ever-changing boundary between the city of Toronto and Lake Ontario. The waterfront is a transition zone where sounds of animals, plants, people, machines and water meet and overlap.

The title "Accidental Wilderness" refers to the transformation of a wasteland into new natural habitats. This happened in Toronto as wildlife reclaimed islands of construction garbage which had been dumped into the lake. Over the years the site became a lush green park, a home and meeting place for many different species. The coastline of Lake Ontario is forever chaging because of climate change and colonial interventions.

There are many kinds of creatures living on the waterfront of Toronto, it is a densely populated place with much more biodiversity than surrounding areas. This transition zone between the city and wildlife is a complex and fluid boundary, hosting not only varieties of native species but also acting as an international hub for migratory birds.

The city borders look concrete but they are a temporary arrangement, and colonial domination can be not only stopped but reversed. Borrowed/stolen land one day can be taken back. Will the city be consumed by the rising water levels or will the lake recede due to droughts? There is no way to predict the future, but new condo towers and “revitalisation” projects just a few steps from a colossal body of water seem the result of wishful thinking.
Soundwalk - Human-generated sounds and Insect sounds
Aug 15 @ 7 pm
NAISA North Media Arts Centre, 313 Highway 124, South River
General $12, Advance Registration Required

As the soundwalk on July 18 focused on the sounds of birds and other animals this one in August will consider human generated sounds and the sounds of insects. Using an improvisatory exploration of the exhibition at NAISA as a starting point, the soundwalk will consider how the layout of South River shapes its acoustic character and how the natural areas accessible to the village have changed since the spring.