Scottish Ensemble x Pauline Oliveros


We invite you to join us
in a state of Deep Listening®

To listen in a new way

To contribute your own sound

To feel united in a musical exploration

Pauline Oliveros

Pauline Oliveros (1932 – 2016) was an American composer, performer and humanitarian. She influenced American music profoundly through her work with improvisation, meditation, electronic music, myth and ritual, and leaves behind a legacy of boundary dissolving music making.

Oliveros defined the idea of Deep Listening® as a conscious act involving selective inclusion and exclusion of sounds from the auditory experience. That is to say, a truly Deep Listening® that allows all sounds we hear around us to have a value, to be worth engaging with and inhabiting.


Oliveros wrote her 25 Sonic Meditations between March and November 1971. They are instructions that anyone can follow, without any need for a knowledge of musical theory or technical skill.

The idea is to find this heightened state of Deep Listening® by paying close attention to your breathing, your body, the sounds around you; and to find new sounds of your own.

Tumbling Song is the 14th meditation
and her instructions are as follows:

Make any vocal sound, but always go downward in pitch from the initial attack. The initial attack may begin at any pitch level. Go downward in a glissando or in discrete steps continuously. Go any distance in range, at any speed, dynamic or quality, but the breath determines the maximum time length of any downward gesture.


Find a place you are comfortable.

With headphones on, simply listen.

Use the fader to mix the world of strings with that of voices.

Explore these sound worlds, the different balances, the thickness and thinness, the highness and the lowness, the light and the dark, and find one that inspires you the most.

Find a sound world that provokes feelings and ideas that you want to inhabit and be part of.

Now that you’ve found your own perfect mix, listen to the 3 minute extract again. This is what you’ll be adding your contribution to!




So far you have heard members of Scottish Ensemble, our instruments and our voices.

But we don’t want to be alone.

We would like you to join us in making this Sonic Meditation a true celebration of listening and togetherness.

You can participate using your voice, or any pitched instrument.

In this Deep Listening® state there is no sound that is wrong.

The way you listen and the way you respond is unique to you, and we cannot wait to have your sound joined with ours.


Submissions are now closed.
Check back here soon for the final track and animation.

By pressing submit you authorise Scottish Ensemble to incorporate your audio track into a final digital audio file that will be released to the public at the end of this project. You also authorise us to store the details you have shared with us until the completion of the project (so we can send you a link to the final audio file).