We Recap Our Sampling Workshop at Museum für Naturkunde

Tutor and analog synth artist Charlie Baldwin (aka Cocktail Party Effect) took our music production students to the Museum für Naturkunde to use their sound archive, as part of a workshop on sampling and sound design.

If given access to a massive sound archive with the likes of growls, chirps and squeaks, could you mix a track? This was the task at the Museum für Naturkunde sampling workshop. Back in April we collaborated with RE:VIVE to set up the Museum für Naturkunde sampling workshop at their prestigious building in the heart of Berlin. This all day event had attendees learning how to tap into the museum’s massive animalsound archive to make unique tracks.

This exercise happened in tandem with the release of a new app from the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin sponsored by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB). Called Naturblick, it helps users explore Berlin’s wildlife by identifying animals and plants. Stemming from an effort to use new media to focus attention to natural spaces and promote environmental education in the digital age, when we got wind of it we thought “what better way to bring attention to something than make a soundtrack for it”.

What we did

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The workshop challenged producers of all levels to be critical listeners and adept sound designers. It was guided by the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision’s RE:VIVE Initiative, an initiative that connects electronic musicians with sound archives, and ourselves. Our tutor Charlie led an intensive lecture and production course on sampling and sound design after we all had a tour of the museum.

Many of our own students attended the workshop and they were given a chance to work on their tracks amongst the inspiring collections of the museum. After a few hours of work, we all gathered again to share what we had done and reveal which kinds of animal sounds were used in the tracks. It was great and we’d like to share it with you! Take a listen to some of the tracks that were made above.