‘Deep Listening’ Pioneer Pauline Oliveros Dead At 84

pauline-oliveros-bigAmerican composer Pauline Oliveros has died.

Oliveros (May 30, 1932 – November 25, 2016) was founder of the Deep Listening Institute and had a 50+ year contemporary music career, focused on exploring new ways of listening to sound.

She pioneered the concept of Deep Listening, combining improvisation, electronic music, ritual, teaching and meditation to inspire musicians to practice the art of listening and responding to environmental conditions.

Oliveros described Deep Listening as “listening in every possible way to everything possible to hear no matter what one is doing.”  Deep Listening, as developed by Oliveros, explores the difference between the involuntary nature of hearing and the voluntary, selective nature – exclusive and inclusive — of listening.  

In this video, Oliveros discusses Deep Listening and the difference between hearing and listening:

During the mid-’60s, she served as the first director of the Tape Music Center at Mills College, aka Center for Contemporary Music, followed by 14-years as Professor of Music and 3 years as Director of the Center for Music Experiment at the University of California at San Diego.

Since 2001,  she served as Distinguished Research Professor of Music  in the Arts department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Her research interests included improvisation, special needs interfaces and telepresence teaching and performing. She also served as  Darius Milhaud Composer in Residence at Mills College.

7 thoughts on “‘Deep Listening’ Pioneer Pauline Oliveros Dead At 84

  1. The recordings made at Fort Worsen Cistern are amazing. There’s an Impulse Response of the cistern included in the Altiverb library. One of the longest reverberant decays of any man made structure. Oliveros and her associates made many recordings there

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