59 episodes

Innovative and thought-provoking features that make adventurous use of sound and explore a wide variety of subjects. Made by leading radio producers.

Between the Ears BBC Radio 3

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Innovative and thought-provoking features that make adventurous use of sound and explore a wide variety of subjects. Made by leading radio producers.

    Sound First and Words First

    Sound First and Words First

    Emerging talent from two BBC talent development schemes - Sound First and Words First - collaborate to create new soundworlds of spoken word and sound design.
    Evocative, thoughtful and challenging, new poems recorded at the BBC Contains Strong Language festival in Leeds by the Words First spoken word artists are interwoven with new sound designs from our Sound First sound artists.
    Sound First is supported by ambassador Ben Brick, the producer of Have You Heard George's Podcast? by George the Poet. Words First is supported by the poetry organisations Apples and Snakes and Young Identity.
    Poems and Sound Designs by:
    Stories in Storeys by Lisa O'Hare - sound design by Caitlin Hinds
    Dear Miss Nanji by Anna Margarita - sound design by Owen McDonnell
    Mind The Bleep by Nigeen Dara - sound design by Jo Kennedy
    ESCA by HL Truslove - sound design by Laura Campbell
    This Thing Called Life by Jed - sound design by Cameron Naylor
    Aquaphobia by Nosa - sound design by Cameron Naylor and Owen McDonnell
    Planted by Anisa Butt - sound design by Jo Kennedy
    My Last Night with Mandy by Spoken 2 Life - sound design by Laura Campbell
    The Shrewing of the Tame by Lisa O'Hare - sound design by Oliver Denman
    We Are Not Divided by Anna Margarita - sound design by Ross Burns

    • 36 min
    From Dusk Till Dawn

    From Dusk Till Dawn

    Ian Rawes (1965-2021) was a sound recordist best known for creating the London Sound Survey, a huge collection of his recordings of the sounds of London.
    Before his death, Ian was recording the course of the night across the wilder places of East Anglia. He made these field recordings in remote locations across Norfolk and Suffolk, sometimes camping overnight in bird hides to capture the different nocturnal moments.
    Ian called the project, ‘From Dusk Till Dawn’, and handed the recordings to his friend, composer/producer Iain Chambers, saying that he wanted them to bring about something new.
    Here, writer Kayo Chingonyi responds to the recordings, and Iain uses both elements to create a new composed sound piece, in tribute to Ian Rawes.
    We start at sunset: the sounds of wildfowl travel far across the flooded fields of the Ouse Washes in Cambridgeshire. Many are Bewick's and whooper swans spending the winter in the Fens before migrating back to Iceland and Siberia.
    Recordings – Ian Rawes / The London Sound Survey
    Words/voice – Kayo Chingonyi
    Composer/producer – Iain Chambers
    Mixing engineer – Peregrine Andrews
    Executive Producer – Nina Perry
    An Open Audio production for BBC Radio 3

    • 28 min
    Deep Listening in Japan

    Deep Listening in Japan

    A sonic journey into Japan's unique culture of music cafés and listening bars. Places where people come together to indulge in deep listening in audiophile quality, with venues for fans of everything from classical, jazz, to electronic music.
    This culture has its origins in the time prior to the second world war, when imported records and audio equipment were prohibitively expensive. People began to gather in cafés where, for the price of a cup of coffee, they could listen to rare records on the highest quality gramophones.
    While the traditional classical and jazz cafés are slowly disappearing, there are new modern listening bars emerging, often concentrating on specific genres and even microgenres of contemporary music, with a focus on the same concept of concentrated and collective listening.
    Rich in binaural recordings, this radio documentary features the owners and regulars of legendary music cafés, like the classical music cafés Violon in Tokyo, and Musik in Kyoto, the jazz café Downbeat in Yokohama, as well as the DJ-Bar Bridge, a cutting-edge listening bar in Shibuya, Tokyo.
    Producer: Andreas Hartmann in collaboration with Julia Shimura
    Translation: Krzysztof Honowski
    Voice Actors: Peter Becker, Matthew Burton, Ian Dickinson, Riah Knight and Tomas Sinclair Spencer
    Photo Credit: Andreas Hartmann

    • 29 min
    Imagining the Permafrost

    Imagining the Permafrost

    The permafrost is a thriving ecosystem, teaming with life, mythology, histories and futures, hidden just below the surface. Yet unlike tropical rainforests or the deep oceans, this frozen expanse rarely appears in the cultural imagination. Curator Sophie J Williamson ventures on a journey to discover the life of the permafrost.
    In -40° winter of the Canadian Yukon Valley, ancient forests, perfectly preserved by the permafrost, are uncovered by miners and 10,000-year-old grass seeds sprout into life. In the blustery remote Artic town of Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard (the world's northernmost settlement) cryomicrobiologists drill boreholes hundreds of meters deep to explore the deepest and oldest of earthly ecologies, bringing to the surface living microbes that are hundreds of thousands of years old. And in unceded Sápmi lands of northern Finland, permafrost mounds decompose into marshy peatlands, while biologists trace the shifting bio- and geoacoustics of a changing ecology.
    From the piercing-white tundra and the hundreds of thousands of lakes across the vast expanse of Siberia, indigenous folklore emerges from the unknowns of the icy underlands. And scientists in Yakutsk (the world’s coldest city), travel the icy landscapes to discover the stories secreted within the still fleshy, visceral carcasses of mammoths and ancient creatures that are exposed as the millennia-year-old ice thaws.
    With contributions by Hannu Autto, Jonathan Carruthers-Jones, Tori Herridge, Karen Lloyd, Sanna Piilo, Svetlana Romanova, Nikita Tananaev, Peter von Tiesenhausen, and other members of Sámi, Sakha and Yukagir communities of unceded Sápmi territory and Northern Siberia who prefer not to be named.
    Specially commissioned spoken word piece by Sata Taas (written and spoken by Al-Yene and Jaangy, with sound design by Karina Kazaryan aka KP Transmission)
    With excerpts of Jana Winderen's 'Energy Field', 'Listening Through the Dead Zones' and 'Pasvikdalen'. Published by Touch Music.
    Recorded and curated by Sophie J Williamson
    Sound design by Rob Mackay
    Produced by Mark Rickards
    A Whistledown Scotland Production for BBC 3
    Imagining the Permafrost is part of the wider arts programme, Undead Matter. Follow on Instagram @undead_matter

    • 28 min
    Dying Embers: The UK's last Coal Fired Power Stations

    Dying Embers: The UK's last Coal Fired Power Stations

    The UKs last remaining coal fired power stations are about to close, bringing to an end our use of coal to produce our electricity. West Burton is one of the last coal fired power stations still generating electricity, and Andrew Carter was able to record a soundscape there before it falls silent for ever.
    West Burton was originally planned to close in September 2022, but the Russian invasion of Ukraine has extended its operations until the spring of 2023 to help with continuity of supply during the current energy crisis.
    Andrew's late father was a mechanical engineer, and he worked for the Central Electricity Generating Board, and fifty years ago he took Andrew around Cottam power station – which is just up the road from West Burton – and as you can imagine that tour around the plant left a big impression on an eight year old.
    As luck would have it, when Andrew was recording at West Burton, he was able to go to Cottam, which he discovered is now in the process of being demolished, and he walked again in his father’s footsteps. It brought back a lot of poignant memories.
    This soundscape in an operating, and disused coal fired power station is Andrew's homage to his father, before these cathedrals of power are reduced to rubble, capturing, before it’s too late, the sounds that would otherwise be lost to history.
    A BBC Radio Cumbria production, produced by Andrew Carter

    • 28 min
    The Beach

    The Beach

    In this piece, the fool stands at the edge of the cliff, looking up at the sky.
    She asks herself, “How did I get here?”
    And also, “Where am I meant to go?”
    Part of our recurring series of miniature audio-works for Radio 3's home for adventurous radio-making - Between the Ears. In this series, five audio-makers from around the world were invited to choose a card from the tarot deck as a creative prompt for their idea. The card at the heart of this edition is The Fool.
    Featuring: Briana Gutierrez
    Additional voices: Kate Bowen, Cristina Umaña Durán, Hannah Patterson, Ruoyi Shi, Sofija Stefanovic, and Canelo Joaquin
    Produced by Phoebe Wang
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 3

    • 13 min

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