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AIAS and Between Music Joint Workshop: Under Water Reverberation Workshop

Photo credits: Charlotta de Miranda

JOINT WORKSHOP - 9 FEBRUARY 2021, 15:00 - 18:00 (GMT+1)

”They both listened silently to the water, which to them was not just water, but the voice of life, the voice of Being, the voice of perpetual Becoming.”

- Hermann Hesse

In the underwater realm sound travels four times faster than it would in air. It warps and distorts; challenges our sense of direction. As the sound flows - not through our ears - but directly through the tissue of the body, the line between our self and the surroundings becomes increasingly blurred. An immersive state of perpetual change that plays with our senses, questions our perception of reality and reminds us that everything is flow.

To navigate we would have to let go of old habits, and start to ask new questions with our eyes and ears wide open. What new insights are there to gain from this hidden world of sounds and reverberations? What may this underwater sound world teach us about ourselves and our relation to the world we inhabit?

Between Music want to create the full experience of the underwater world by integrating underwater reverberation in their music, both digitally in the AquaSonic album, where they will use the underwater reverberation to perfect the sounds and enhance the compositions; and live in the AquaSonic concert, where they, through the use of 3D sound, want to recreate the acoustic disorientation the human body experience underwater and create an immersive and sensory soundscape that will enclose the audience from all directions.

The workshop is a joint collaboration between the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS) at Aarhus University and Between Music, and brings artists, audio specialists and researchers together to discuss water and more specifically underwater sound.

The purpose of this workshop is therefore twofold:

1. What are the possibilities of creating a varied and high-quality sample library of underwater reverbs?

2. How to recreate the acoustic underwater experience in a 3D sound system?


Laila Skovmand, Artistic Director, Between Music

Romans Komar, Sound Engineer, Between Music

Christina Lidegaard, Producer, Between Music

Søren Rud Keiding, Professor specialized in Water, Laser, Optics, Molecules, AIAS, Aarhus University

Preston Wilson, Professor specialized in Underwater and Physical Acoustics, UT Austin

Mark Johnson, AIAS fellow specialized in Electrical Engineering and Bioacoustics, AIAS, Aarhus University

Niels Chr. Hansen, AIAS fellow specialized in Neuroscience and Music, AIAS,  Aarhus University

Sylvie Tesson, AIAS fellow specialized in Microorganism and Water, AIAS,  Aarhus University

Magnus Wahlberg, Associate Professor specialized in Bioacoustics, University of Southern Denmark

Angelo Farina, Professor specialized in Applied Acoustics, Università di Parma

Ralph Kessler, Audio Engineer specialized Auralization and Impulse Responses, Master Pinguin

Gorm Wendelboe, Lead Acoustician for Underwater Acoustic Equipment, Teledyne Reson

Bjorn Munster, 3D Sound Specialist and Managing Director, Astro Spatial Audio



  • Introduction of workshop and participants, by Laila Skovmand

Part one: Creating the best conditions for under water reverb recordings 

  • Introduction to water and its characteristics, by Søren Rud Keiding
  • Introduction to underwater acoustic environments, by Preston Wilson
  • Discussion: How do different conditions change the reverberation?

Part two: Recording for a high quality under water reverb 

  • Introduction to reverb recording and engineering
  • Presentation of first underwater reverb recording attempts, by Roman Komar
  • Discussion: How should we record to get the best quality?

Part three: Recreating under water reverb through 3D acoustics 

  • How do humans hear underwater?
  • Introduction to 3D sound, by Bjorn Munster
  • Discussion: How to give people the acoustic feeling of being underwater with 3D sound?


The workshop is a joint collaboration between the Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS) at Aarhus University and Between Music.


The workshop will be recorded and parts of it will subsequently be published on the AIAS and Between Music webpages. By participating, attendees and speakers of the workshop give their consent to this publication of the workshop.