Academic Confucius Institute at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
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Workshop: The Sound Topography of Göttingen

September 19, 2020

The Chinese Theater in Göttingen will host a workshop on the sound topography of Göttingen (SOTO-Gö) in September 2020. The “sound” refers to sounds gathered in the city of Göttingen. “Topography” originally means the description of a place, and it applies to maps in a broad sense here. The workshop attends to sound sources existing in the world, both natural and man-made types. Participants will record sounds, segregate individual sound sources, and upload recordings with local geographical information onto a digital map. Through localizing sound sources in visual scenes, we will categorize the features of languages and sounds of Göttingen communities. We will learn the mechanisms of sound from phonation to auditory perception. We will also analyze how the sounds invoke memories, feelings and specific circumstances to remind the listener of certain moods, which may lead to positive attitude towards listening. We believe that exploring sounds by listening actively and consciously will contribute to transforming individuals into better practitioners for communities, as in the worlds of sound, “relational” and “collective self” are as important as “individual self” for self-construction.


The workshop will first guide participants in enhancing their auditory perceptions through rhythmic movements. After which, participants will watch videos and read screenplays to understand meanings and purposes of sound design in theater. We will also analyze subtexts of a play in terms of its usage and effects, and observe how theatrical auditory elements are arranged by screenwriters and directors to explore expressions of certain values, faiths and ideologies. These listening trainings will be followed by sound mapping with a focus on reflecting relations between self and community. Other activities include deconstructing certain play scenes for new artistic presentations, such as reorganization, overlay and collage techniques.


Throughout the process-oriented workshop, participants will collaborate with each other to find questions and complete tasks. In those practices, the workshop seeks not only to redefine the concepts of “dimension”, “live performance” and “virtuality and reality” in the field of drama arts, but also, through organic interactions connecting individuals and communities, to go beyond the conventional perception of the relationship between drama and documentary aesthetics.



Sound Exercises: enhance auditory perception through rhythmic movements.
Sounds in Drama:  

understand meanings and purposes of sound design in theater; analyze subtexts in terms of its usage and effects; observe how theatrical auditory elements are arranged by screenwriters and directors to explore expressions of certain value, faith and ideology.

Sound Map:  

record sounds; identify sound forms; demonstrate local recordings with geographical information on digital map; visualize languages and sound features of communities in the city of Göttingen.


Virtual Performance:  

attend Round Table Talk at B·O·N·D 2020; introduce the SOTO-Gö workshop; present sound map of Göttingen and re-created play scenes with effects of collage and overlay; open discussion and Q&A.


Time and Location  

Sep. 19, 2020, 9 am, Online Zoom Portal

Workshop Schedule





Deadline: Aug. 31, 2020

Your participation in the workshop is free of charge.



The SOTO-Gö Workshop Committee (Yumin Ao/Zhao Zhao/Yang Shen/Yining Chen/ Siqi Zhong)



The SOTO-Gö Workshop Committee reserves the right to final interpretation.


September 19, 2020


Online Portal Zoom