HANCOCK SHAKER VILLAGE CREATES AN IMMERSIVE SONIC EXPERIENCE USING NEUMANN KH 80 DSP MONITORS
PITTSFIELD, MA – September 27, 2018 – The Silo Songs installation at the Hancock Shaker Village is a unique testament to the mysterious Shaker melodies that inspired it. “There is a long history of the Shakers sharing these songs,” explains sound designer Jody Elff, “They believed they were divine gifts – ‘Gifts from the beyond’.” The deep spirituality of the Shakers is just one of many aspects that visitors to the Hancock Shaker Village can learn about, but it is the total immersion in their music that Silo Songs creates — bringing these 200-year old songs to life with the help of Neumann KH 80 DSP monitors.
A storied history and renewed inspiration
The project was initiated by the Hancock Shaker Village, who wanted to transform one of their historic silos into an audio installation. They invited Brad Wells, a professor of vocal science at nearby Williams College to create the piece, who then brought Jody Elff on to engineer the soundscape. Wells and Elff painstakingly recorded dozens of vocalists performing Shaker hymns in a variety of styles and groupings, and once these recordings were completed, they assembled the overlapping presentation style. “The goal was to represent the experience of these songs in a physical space,” said Elff.