Sounding out Sheffielders

Chris Watson recording ants.
Chris Watson recording ants.

WHAT’S your favourite sound of Sheffield?

Local people are being invited to contribute to an exhibition at the Millennium Gallery in the autumn.

Musician and sound recordist Chris Watson is aiming to produce a ‘map’ of his home city solely through sound.

His fascination with sound developed from making childhood tapes of birdsong in his garden. He co-founded Sheffield electronic pioneers Cabaret Voltaire and is now one of the UK’s pre-eminent sound recordists, specialising in wildlife and natural phenomena.

He captured the sound of seals singing under the sea ice for David Attenborough’s Frozen Planet and won a BAFTA for Best Factual Recording for his work on The Life of Birds.

Chris said: “I’m really looking forward to rediscovering the signature sounds and rhythms of my city, from the high moorland boundaries to the urban and industrial core. ”

Chris is leading events throughout April to give people the expertise and opportunity to make recordings, with a workshop at the Graves on April 17 and 3am trips into the countryside on April 20 and 21 for the break of birdsong. Tel 278 2655 or email

Inside the Circle of Fire is at the Millennium Gallery from September 12 until February 23.