30 January – 6 February 2021


Sound of Light

The Northern Lights Festival gives the city back to the nature and lets you experience the Northern Lights as music!

JMA Sound Of Light

Sound of Light is a music installation in 3D sound, based on sonic reproductions of the Northern Lights.

The installation uses images from so-called All-Sky Cameras, which Northern Lights researchers use to film the sky as they collect research data.

These images are combined with radar images and translated into music composed in 3D format. This system makes it possible to create a sound blanket that recreates the movements of the Northern Lights on the sky in real time in a so-called sound dome - a 6x6x6 meter cube with 25 speakers.

Sound of Light is a commentary on human impact of the nature; we cannot experience the Northern Lights in the centre of Tromsø due to light pollution, that animals must find new ways of communicating because the sounds of manmade machines drown the chirping of the birds and the song of the whales. Here, the Northern Lights will displace human communication for a short time, and what arena is better for it than the Northern Lights Festival?

In addition to experiencing the Northern Lights as music, there will be happenings and concerts every night in the installation. Researchers from UiT - The Arctic University of Norway - will talk about the Northern Lights, and exciting news will be presented from the Norwegian Arctic University Museum.

The project is the result of an interdisciplinary collaboration between researchers at the Music Conservatory, the Norwegian Arctic University Museum and the Faculty of Science and Technology. Composer Jon Marius Aareskjold-Drecker, an associate professor of music technology at UMAK, has collaborated with Derek McKay and Tom Grydeland from Norce Research, Unni Pia Løvhaug and Björn Gustavsson from the NT faculty and Cathrine Paus, Per Helge Nylund and Marit Anne Hauan from UMAK, have put the work to life. In addition, Zack Bresler from UiA and music technology students from UiT contribute to sound design and Tor Ditlevsen from Superlys with lighting design.

Thursday 23 January at 17:00: Opening of the exhibition

Sunday 26 January at 18:00: Concert by the renowned contemporary music ensemble EAU and lectures on Northern Lights Research by members of UiT's Northern Lights Network.

Buy Tickets


Thursday 23. January

Kl. 17.00

Erling Bangsund plass (Outside Kulturhuset)

Opening of the exhibition


Sunday 26. January

Kl. 18.00

Erling Bangsunds plass (Outside Kulturhuset)

Concert by the renowned contemporary music ensemble EAU. Lectures on Northern Lights Research by members of UiT's Northern Lights Network.

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