The Royal Parks—Music for Trees

by Echoes Labs

location: the Regents Park, London, UK

project type: bespoke mobile app

‘I came up with the idea for Music for Trees while I was surveying trees. I tend to listen to music while I work, and sometimes the music seems a perfect accompaniment. I took the next step and imagined whether music could be composed for trees.’

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Matt Steinmann │ Royal Parks arboriculturist

About

A unique walking and listening experience linking the trees in Regent's Park with specially composed music.

We worked with The Royal Parks and The Royal Academy of Music for several months on a site-specific experience in the beautiful Regents Park in central London. Together we brought alive the visionary idea of Royal Park's arboriculturist Matt Steinmann, magnificent trees of London and mesmerizing music pieces by the Royal Academy of Music composition students. Each piece of music is composed and assigned to a specific tree type and serves as a portal to a poetic parallel universe: giving you a way to really see the trees and experience a different relationship with each one of them. As you wander through the area sounds overlap, intensify, fade and layer in a truly personal soundscape – unique for every visitor, every time.

Bringing together the best of nature, music, and walking, the free app is helping visitors de-stress, get active, and learn about the many species of trees in one of London’s eight Royal Parks.

The geo-location app comes to life in Gloucester Gate, situated in the north-east corner of The Regent’s Park. This area of parkland is home to over 30 species of trees that include walnut, hornbeam, ash and London plane.

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‘For the project initiated by the Royal Parks and undertaken by students from The Royal Academy of Music, Echoes adapted their unique technology to deliver a soundscape installation via a bespoke app with multiple overlapping musical playback sources...

‘The Echoes team were pro-active and dynamic in their engagement with the project, communicating effectively as part of a project development team and engaging with the music students to explain technical requirements. In the development, process problems were effectively addressed as they were identified and the result is an app which has gained national publicity for the organisation and very positive feedback from users.

‘The team’s judgement and good taste produced a beautifully designed and effectively intuitive app, which delivers the soundscape installation as well as further information about tree species and the music should the user require it. This effective demonstration of Echoes’ geolocation technology has proven its ability to deliver information for The Royal Parks.

‘Further iterations of the app to provide all kinds of information about the parks are now being discussed. It has been a pleasure to work with the Echoes team and we hope to continue our relationship.’

matt-steinmann

Matt Steinmann │ Royal Parks arboriculturist

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