The Ocean Song project goes to Pevensey!

The Museum’s Public Engagement Team are bringing Ocean Song workshops to Pevensey on Sunday August 23rd. Ocean Song is an exciting and innovative project creating a sound installation to accompany our iconic Finback Whale skeleton in his new Whale Hall. We are working with the brilliant award-winning sound recordist and sound artist Chris Watson and the wonderful voice teacher Rowena Whitehead to collect natural sounds and human voices to weave together into a soundscape of the sea.

Why Pevensey? Our enormous Finback Whale washed ashore at Normans Bay just around the coast from Pevensey in November 1865. The Museum staff went on a trip down to Pevensey in July to see the site, taking a vertebra from the skeleton back for the first time since it came to Cambridge in 1866.

We now want to collect the sounds of the sea from the beach, along with voices from Pevensey, to accompany this important specimen.

We are running two workshops on August 23rd in Pevensey. We will be at Normans Bay from 11am-1pm with Chris Watson capturing the sounds of the sea. This is a wonderful opportunity to work with one of the world’s leading recorders of wildlife sounds and discover sounds from above and beneath the ocean’s waves. Places for this workshop are limited, so booking is essential. To book a place, or for further information, email

In the afternoon, from 3pm-5pm, we will be raising the roof of St Nicolas’ Church in Pevensey with voice teacher and choir leader Rowena Whitehead, and discovering sounds from the world’s oceans and the animals that live there with Chris Watson. This is a fun, participatory workshop where you get to discover amazing sounds and explore your own voice as we create a human symphony of the sea. This is a chance to add your voice to the sound installation. You can book places at this workshop online at: Online Booking for Ocean Song Pevensey

Pevensey too far away for you to travel, but you still want to add your voice to the Ocean Song soundscape? Fear not, we are running workshops in Ely Museum on Thursday August 27th from 3pm-4.30pm and 7pm-8.30pm with Rowena Whitehead and the Museum team. To book a place, visit: Online Booking for Ocean Song Ely

If you want to find out more about the Ocean Song project, visit the Ocean Song Blog. You can hear some of the recordings we have made already, and find out more about the project and its inspiration. And listen out every Monday morning from August 17th at 9.30am on BBC Radio 4 for our sound artist Chris Watson’s series of audio postcards Soundstage.

Chris Watson is one of the world’s leading recorders of wildlife and natural phenomena. Chris’s television work includes many programmes in David Attenborough’s “Life” series, including “The Life of Birds”, which won a BAFTA for best factual sound. He has also worked on many programmes for the radio and produced sound installations for many high profile organisations. For more information about Chris and his work, visit his website


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