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As part of their residency, Open House Artists in Residence, Wright & Vandame, invited the local community of North Cambridge to respond to themes around well-being throughout 2019.

Musician and Kettle’s Yard Artist Facilitator, Ian Brownlie, invited students from the Castle School, an inclusive school supporting SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities) pupils, to create calm and relaxing soundscapes together.

Throughout the sessions the Key Stage 4 students thought about things they like to do to relax or things that make them feel calm. Suggestions included drinking smoothies, enjoying movies and having fun with families and friends!

Brownlie led activities that supported students to play new instruments, explore their sounds, play together as a group with pupils as leaders and also create sounds using relaxing and calming approaches and techniques.

After all the sessions, the final soundscapes were edited and the students had the opportunity to listen to them. Their responses to the pieces included: ‘It sounds like water!’,  “It’s calm”,  “It’s a sleepy sound”, “It’s good” and “Please play it again”.

The soundscapes were played at Meeting Ground, a two week installation and programme of events devised by Wright & Vandame, at Nuns Way Pavilion, King’s Hedges in February 2020.

You can also listen to and enjoy the Castle School soundscapes anytime here.

Ian Brownlie at Meeting Ground, photo: My Linh Le