Composer and Executive Director, Deep Listening Institute (Troy, NY)
The difference between hearing and listening
Sounds carry intelligence. If you are too narrow in your awareness of sounds, you are likely to be disconnected from your environment. Ears do not listen to sounds; the brain does. Listening is a lifetime practice that depends on accumulated experiences with sound; it can be focused to detail or open to the entire field of sound. Octogenarian composer and sound art pioneer Pauline Oliveros describes the sound experiment that led her to found an institute related to Deep Listening, and develop it as a theory relevant to music, psychology, and our collective quality of life.
Pauline is a composer and accordionist who significantly contributed to the development of electronic music. The culmination of her life-long fascination with music and sound is what inspired the practice of Deep Listening, the art of listening and responding to environmental conditions. As a Professor of Practice in the Arts Department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, she produced highly regarded work as a composer and improviser. Pauline’s 1989 recording, Deep Listening, is considered a classic in her field.