SARC (Sonic Arts Research Centre)
Queen’s University Belfast

About us
SARC is an established centre of excellence dedicated to the research of music technology. We work in an interdisciplinary environment which has united internationally recognised experts in the areas of musical composition, digital signal processing, performance technologies, acoustics and sound art.

The Centre is established in a purpose-built facility located alongside the engineering departments of Queen’s University Belfast. SARC’s centrepiece, the Sonic Laboratory, provides a unique space for cutting-edge initiatives in the creation and delivery of music and audio. The Sonic Laboratory’s uniqueness is vested in the degree of flexibility it can provide for experiments in 3D sound diffusion and for ground-breaking compositional and performance work within a purpose-built, variable acoustic space.

Our role in Distributed Listening
At SARC we often perform with musicians in other parts of the world. We do this through a special internet connection where we can send and receive high quality audio (this is called network performance, also referred to as telematic performance or distributed creativity – hence the title for the project “Distributed Listening”.

When a musician play with people in other parts of the world without being able to see the other, i.e. without being able to perform with the other ‘bodily,’ i.e. breathing together, giving visual cues (the things that musicians tend to do), then this type of music making becomes an interesting arena where we can explore ideas around how musicians communicate with each other; how they can still perform together. We might ask what sort of music might be best to perform in the network and so on. With this project we want to transfer strategies  that we learned from network music performance to the context of theatre. We also want to learn about a different audience base (i.e. non-academic audiences).

Further, it is important for us to enhance the value and benefits of previously funded AHRC research on network music performance and to develop new collaborative networks with all the project partners.

Short Bios
Franziska Schroeder is leading this AHRC project. She is also a saxophonist with an interest in free improvisation. Franziska teaches students at SARC in the area of digital performance. She leads the Events Committee and is Head of Performance in the School of Creative Arts.

Franziska will develop certain listening strategies that can be explored with the app that we will be developing.

Pedro Rebelo is a co-leader on this AHRC project. He is also a composer and pianist. He is Director of Research in the School of Creative Arts. His main role is to liaise on the app development and give creative input into the listening strategies that we will develop for the work.

42nd Street
87-91 Great Ancoats Street
M4 5AG

About us
42nd Street is a young people’s mental health charity committed to ‘supporting young people under stress (11 to 25 years) to achieve their full potential.’ 42nd Street has an extensive 30 year track record of providing an innovative menu of services to young people who are under stress and experiencing mental health problems. Common presenting issues are depression, anxiety, behavioural problems and self-harm. We target services to young people who are at a higher risk of mental ill health due to poor access to services e.g. LGBT young people; disabled young people, young parents, and young carers. Last year we worked with over 2000 young people.

In the last 2 years 42nd Street has developed and embedded a high quality cross arts programme into the core of our work with young people. We deliver high quality, contemporary, artist led, participant focussed work with artists including Grizedale Arts, Open Music Archive, Manchester Art Gallery, Unity Radio and the University of Manchester. We have built a strong reputation for our work which has resulted in HLF funding to transform an empty Victorian shop into a three storey creative space for young people. This facility will open in March 2016.

Our role in Distributed Listening
The Horsfall programme includes one larger scale, higher profile event per year with the aim of taking artistic risks, giving young people the chance to take part in extraordinary projects and raising the (inter)national profile of our work.

Distributed Listening will form part of our first project of this nature which we are developing with Annette Mees and Tom Bowtell.  As this project is at its very early stages, we are as yet unsure of how this will work but this also means that we will be able to respond to developments over the next few months.  The project will transform the Horsfall space into an immersive experience (probably fairly static exhibition by day) which is the setting for a site specific/immersive performance in the evening.  Our target audience is young people who use our services, other young people and the general public interested in socially engaged practice.

Short Bios
Julie McCarthy is a Cultural Producer with over twenty years’ experience in the UK and internationally in the field of Arts and Social Change. Julie has worked in a range of sectors including community development, public health, criminal justice and mental health, first as a practitioner and now as a producer and consultant. Julie currently manages the thriving creative programme at 42nd Street and in 2016 will launch The Horsfall (@TheHorsfall); a dedicated creative space and programme for young people experiencing mental health difficulties. The programme is routed in socially engaged practice and across art forms.

Tom Bowtell and Annette Mees are theatre makers. They are the lead artists on the project at 42nd Street. They make immersive and interactive work, often using digital means. In the recent past they shared the artistic directorship of Coney. Their most recent collaboration resulted in Early Days (of a better nation) –was a piece of interactive theatre for a playing audience, whom were put in charge of a fictional nation where the war is over and the nation lies in ruins. Audiences build the beginnings of a new country. Each night their choices, ideas and debates resulted in a unique new nation. It toured the UK around the elections in 2015 and we hope it will be performed at the Brisbane Festival in the run up to their 2016 General Election.

Tom Bowtell is Artistic Director of KIT Theatre ( a company who create immersive theatre for, by and with young people. KIT is currently working on Wardrobes a new 4-week Adventure in Learning (!wardrobes/pxk5l) in which the magical wardrobes of Narnia spontaneously appear in schools and libraries across Birmingham. KIT are also responsible for the recent spate of time-machine crashes in Ealing –!professor-memo-s-time-machine/yp14u

Tom founded the Adventures in Learning programme in 2009 with the ambition to explore the potential of immersive theatre and games to deliver education. He has written and delivered AiL projects to more than 5000 pupils and in 2011 the Astronautical Challenge AiL won a National Charity Award for Arts, Culture and Heritage.

Tom is also the current director of the Tricycle Young Company and is working with Battersea Arts Centre on its new Creative Museums Programme. Tom’s TED talk “Can Theatre Actually Change Anything” can be found here:

Annette Mees is an award-winning artist who makes work that explores big ideas, powered by people. She is currently a Creative Fellow of WIRED and The Space. She is currently working on The Almanac of The Future – a global intergenerational project that will work with 15 and 65 year olds to create a digital almanac of the future we want in next 50 years.

Her work focuses on collaborative innovation projects that help imagine possible futures. I work with diverse partners create beautiful experiences using tools from theatre, stories, digital, design and play to explore possible futures and shape the real world. She consult and speak nationally and internationally on innovation models, audience engagement and interaction.

In the past decade she has developed, produced and directed large-scale projects, leading diverse interdisciplinary teams in collaboration with Tate Britain, Kensington Palace, UK Parliament, 01SJ San Jose Biennial, King’s College, Warwick University, Goldsmith’s University, Battersea Arts Centre, Inbetween Time Festival, Art Gallery Wallsall, Warwick Arts Centre and many audiences everywhere.

Lyric Belfast
55 Ridgeway St,

About us
The Lyric Theatre is Northern Ireland only full-time producing theatre. It was founded in the 1950s but 5 years ago opened a new £18 million building with two performance spaces. Liam Neeson is our patron. The Creative Learning department began working when the new theatre opened and has expanded in staffing and programming. We now have 3 full time staff and a team of freelance facilitators who deliver an extensive programme of activities: actor training, weekly drama classes, outreach work in schools and colleges as well as collaborating with the Royal Shakespeare Company on their Open Stages and Dream 16 projects. We also are a partner theatre for the National Theatre’s Connections festival.

Our role in Distributed Listening
We will be working with a group of young people to deliver the project. They are likely to be actors, but exactly what we will be doing, I don’t yet know. Looking forward to finding out when we all get the chance to meet up!

Short Bios
Philip Crawford is the Head of Creative Learning. He originally trained as an actor at the Royal Welsh and then after 15 years as at teachers, set up Happenstance Theatre Company, which is still active when he’s not at the Lyric!

Gerard Kelly is going to coordinate the Distributed Listening project for the Lyric. Gerard studied Drama at Liverpool and has recently been Assistant Director on a number of Meyerhold-inspired projects in Russia.

Amanda Coogan is an internationally recognised and critically acclaimed artist working across the medias of live art, performance, photography and video. In 2010 the Irish Times said, ‘Coogan, whose work usually entails ritual, endurance and cultural iconography, is the leading practitioner of performance in the country’. She is one of the most dynamic contemporary artists practising in live art. Her extraordinary work is challenging, provocative and always visually stimulating. Using gesture and context she makes allegorical and poetic works that are multi-faceted, and challenge expected contexts. Her work moves freely between solo presented live performances, group performances and installation.

Coogan was awarded the Allied Irish Bank’s Art Prize and has extensively presented and performed her work, including at The Venice Biennale, Liverpool Biennial, PS1; New York, The Whitworth Gallery; Manchester, The Museum of Fine Arts; Boston, Van Gogh Museum; Amsterdam and the Manchester International Festival. From 2010-2013 Coogan worked with theatre director Robert Wilson on his production The Life and Death of Marina Abramovic where two of her works are quoted; Yellow and Medea. She has just completed a major new live art exhibition, I’ll sing you a song from around the town, at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin featuring six solo performances presented simultaneously, which Artforum described as ‘performance art at its best’.

Young Vic
66 The Cut, Waterloo,

About us
The Young Vic is a world leading home for theatre artists.  We produce and co-produce classics, new plays, forgotten works, dance, music theatre and opera at the highest level.  We are inclusive, providing opportunities for artists and audiences of all ages and backgrounds.  Our audience is diverse, with around 160,000 audience members visiting us in London and more on tour per year. We produce an average of 15 shows a year across our three spaces.  Over the last five years, our audience has expanded by approximately 50%, reflecting the success of our seasons and our reach outside our home.

Our role in distributed listening
The Young Vic has been researching multiple forms of networked performance and wants to support the field.  A key question is how to tell meaningful stories that use rather than focus on technology. Ben and Imogen are serving as “external friendly eyes and ears” to the project delivery partners. Ben will contribute to the evaluation framework of the project at the end.

Short bios
Ben Cooper-Melchiors is now General Manager of East London Dance and a freelance digital advisor to the Young Vic. In a previous role there, he produced a digital R&D project looking at three-site, intercontinental networked performance, with an audience at each location connected by screens. Multiple workshops were delivered. The next stage is a 5G application across London with King’s College London, UCL, Cinema Arts Network, Vodafone and Ericsson.

Imogen works as Director of Taking Part at the Young Vic.  Taking Part work with over 10,000 people a year in the Young Vic’s local boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark.  They offer free tickets, run workshops and produce shows with young people and local adults.  Before working at the Young Vic, Imogen was Director of Theatre at the BRIT School of Performing Arts.

Heather Carr – Be Ten Minutes More

Short Bio
Heather has over 12 years experience working with some of Northern Ireland’s most successful and forward thinking businesses to help them develop better people and better places to work through training, employee engagement and rewards.

Heather passionately believes that everyone deserves to have a great day at work.

She has seen first hand how using creativity in projects as diverse as art commissions, magic masterclasses and voice training, makes teams more connected, more engaged and happier in their work resulting in better businesses.

Her enthusiasm, attention to detail and professional approach ensures that all the Ten Minutes More projects are effective, stress free and above all fun.

Locus Sonus

About us

Locus Sonus is a research group specialized in audio art. It is organized as a post graduate lab by the Art Schools of Aix en Provence (ESAA) and Bourges (ENSA) in France. We have a partnership with sociology lab CNRS, LAMES Aix en Provence (which is interested by the way practices relate to new technologies and are creating modifications in artistic production and the way that the audience reacts to these modifications). We currently continue collaborations with the CRESSON, architecture lab CNRS in Grenoble (sonic spaces research centre), the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), and other international partners.

Locus Sonus is concerned with the innovative and transdisciplinary nature of audio art forms, in the framework of networked sonic spaces, some of which are experimented and evaluated in a lab type context. An important factor is with the collective or multi-user aspects inherent to many emerging audio practices and which necessitate working as a group. The main goals define this research – audio in it’s relation to space and networked audio systems. Today our research is grouped under several main headings Sound and Distance, Field Spatialization, Networked Sonic Spaces, Audio Fluxes, Sonification, and Internet Auditoriums.