Over the course of the first few weeks of the term, you’ll be completing a “soundscape journal” of guided listening activities (one activity per week) that will help you deepen your awareness and skills of listening. A copy of the activities distributed in class is available here:

Reflective Writing #1 will be based on your soundscape experience and is due, with your completed journal, in class on W Feb 13 / F Feb 8.

An introduction to this idea has been assigned for reading, and for reference it is available here (R. Murray Schafer, A Sound Education, 1992 — the introduction is found on pages 2-7): Schafer_R_Murray_A_Sound_Education_100_Exercises

A second introduction to consider is the poster below, which hung in the New York City dance studio of choreographer Merce Cunningham in the 1960s consisting of rules for teachers and students, compiled by educator Sister Corita Kent in 1967-68 and partly inspired by composer John Cage. These rules (although the word “rules” here is used ironically, since the ideas they contain are so broad as to defy the formula of typical rules that must be followed) are an effort in one corner of the art world to buck against the rigidity of the conservatory tradition and the notion of top-down learning (i.e., from professional veterans to their disciples). Cage and his partner Cunningham used these rules as a way to create a learning environment in which they and their students were encouraged to grow, explore and create freely: