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Megapolis: Sounds Sprawling


This weekend, Baltimore will host a barn-raising for those of Sound Mind: the aurally fixated among us who not only notice but can wax poetic about an awesome mix; we who never forget a voice; those who like to tinker with tape and technology to transport listeners to lush and immersive audio environments, inventors experimenting with sound and story to create new and engaging media experiences, people who think with their ears and are inspired by what they hear. 

Megapolis Audio Festival is a magnet for DIY-ers, including musicians, audio artists, documentarians, and radio folks. AIR is a sponsor and several AIR members are presenting and participating. So, look out and listen out for AIR’s Sue Schardt and Erin Mishkin. Also, two MQ2 grantees will be in the house: Shea Shackelford and Jenny Asarnow.

Shea and his Big Shedmates Jennifer Deer and Jesse Dukes will present The Place + Memory Project, in what they are calling a Documentary Square Dance.

“Together we will create our own audio map—a remembered landscape of sound and stories. To start things off, we’ll explore some of the stories we’ve already gathered. Then we’re going to get you on your feet and help you jog each other’s memories. After you’ve shared dozens of memories with each other, you’ll use your cell phones to record some of your favorite stories. Finally, exhausted from documentary bliss, we’ll all sit back, look at and listen to what you’ve created, and talk for a little while about what it’s all worth.”

Swing your partner, do-si-do!

Jenny Asarnow, creator of The Corner: 23rd & Union, is “installing” an interactive GPS project called Getting Closer, developed with Eitan Isaacson. Megapolitans with iPhones will be invited to download the Getting Closer app, then, “Open it up. Now you hear stuff! The stuff you hear can only be heard right here, where you hear it. The sounds are virtually embedded in the landscape with GPS. There are treats for you to listen to around the Megapolis venues. There is also a romantic field trip. Getting Closer will tell you which way to go: listen carefully.”

Getting Closer recommends that you bring headphones and bus fare. Sounds like it will be a sonic scavenger hunt full of ear candy.

If you can remember not only what grandma’s house looked and smelled like, but what it sounded like, Megapolis is the gathering for you. Go forth and find your people among the Tribe of Sound Worshippers. And come back here to share (in comments) what seized your imagination and took your breath away.

(Hear no evil graphic grabbed from Baltimore City Paper)