international symposium


International Symposium | SOUNDS OF TOURISM

Celebrated as World’s Leading City Destination and World’s Leading City Break Destination in the World Travel Awards 2018, Lisbon has demonstrated once again its appeal as an international tourist destination. The tourism boom of the Portuguese capital city is reflected not only in soaring numbers of pernoctations and proliferation of hotel units and short-term rental apartments, but also in the competition between visitors and residents for local resources such as housing, transport and leisure spaces. Overtourism has put Lisbon buckling under pressure, fuelling a growing local discontent. The flows of capital into the real estate market combined with the constant pressure of the tourism sector over the local economy and ways of life has turned the historic neighbourhoods into places oriented for tourist consumption, pushing many residents out and transforming the socio-cultural fabric of these central areas of the city. As some critical voices have argued, “[The city] of Lisbon is losing its soul”.

These changes can also be perceived at the level of the sound environment. The refashioning of Lisbon’s urban spaces for tourist consumption has reshaped the sound environment in significant ways as well. New sounds have been introduced into the everyday soundscapes, whereas other distinctive soundmarks have changed or disappeared. Certain music genres and musical sounds are amplified, promoted and used as commodities in city branding strategies (Bottà 2008), whereas others remained muted. If sound can be considered as a means of “exploring the more ephemeral and shifting elements of urbanism” (Atkinson 2007: 1905), namely those qualities of the environment that give urban places their unique and distinctive character (Degen 2008, Thibaud 2011), how that vanishing soul of Lisbon might sound like?

This kick-off international symposium of the research project “Sounds of Tourism” takes the touristification of historic Lisbon neighbourhoods as an excuse to engage in broader discussions about the role of sound and music in the cultural and sensory restructuring of touristified urban spaces. How sound participates in creating and/or resisting these new urban ambiances for tourist consumption? How sound could generate new ways of analysing, understanding and transforming the urban space? The symposium will bring together scholars from the fields of tourism, music and sound studies working in Lisbon and elsewhere to reflect through keynote lectures and round tables on the impact of tourism on the everyday urban public ambiances of the post-industrial city, with a particular focus on the sonic ambiance.


Keynote speakers: Giacomo Bottà (University of Helsinky) and Susan Campos-Fonseca (Universidad de Costa Rica)

Participants: Pedro Rebelo | Jordi Nofre | Inês Henriques | Daniel Malet Calvo | Matilde Meireles | Agustín Cocola Gant | Iñigo Sánchez Fuarros | Daniel Paiva | Jasemin Khaleli | Rui Cidra | Gonçalo Antunes de Oliveira

Dates: February 8, 2019

Venue: Centro de Informação Urbana de Lisboa (CIUL) Picoas Plaza – Rua Viriato, 13 – E, Núcleo 6, 1º

Organisation:  Iñigo Sánchez Fuarros (FCSH/NOVA) and Gonçalo Antunes de Oliveira (FCSH/NOVA)

Languages: English, Portuguese and Spanish

FREE ENTRY. Please register here.


PROGRAM 

09:30 – Welcome coffee


10:00 – Opening | “Sounds of Tourism” | Project presentation: Prof. João Soeiro de Carvalho and Iñigo Sánchez Fuarros (INET-md, FCSH/UNL)


10:30 – Round table 1 | Lisbon as a Tourist City: A Sustainable Model? with Jordi Nofre (CISC.NOVA, FCSH/NOVA), Daniel Malet Calvo (CIES-IUL) and Agustín Cocola Gant (IGOT, UL)


11:30 –  Coffee-break


12:00 – Keynote 1 | Giacomo Bottà (University of Helsinki): Music in Industrial Cities: From Vanishing Mediator to Cultural Catalyst

In this talk I am first going to examine the way popular music anticipated and mediated the step from industrial to post-industrial society, in the critical context of 1980s European industrial cities. I will show why music and music scenes from industrial cities mattered so much in representing deindustrialization and at the same time in offering alternative uses of space and organizations of work. In the second part of the talk, I am looking at various on-going attempts by post-industrial cities to appropriate and heritagize the very same 1980s music production. Within these strategies, music becomes a catalyst to commodify the city and create an appealing image for tourists and citizens alike.


13:00 – Lunch break


14:30 – Round Table 2 | Lisbon: A Music City?   Rui Cidra (INET-md, FCSH/NOVA), Inês Henriques (CTL) and Jasemin Khaleli (University of Vienna)


15:30 – Keynote 2 | Susan Campos Fonseca (Universidad de Costa Rica): “Profecía de los trenes y los almendros muertos” (un ensayo sonoro sobre geobiopolíticas de la gentrificación)

En 2015 el escritor costarricense Marco Aguilar Sanabria, escribió sobre la desaparición del ferrocarril en Costa Rica, y cómo esto cambió para siempre los pueblos que habían nacido sembrados a su paso. El poema se tituló “profecía de los trenes y los almendros muertos”, porque con el paso del tiempo, cortaron las veredas de los árboles que acompañaban las estaciones, aniquilaron la fauna que en ellas habitaba, y se desmembró todo un ecosistema cultural, económico y social. Motivada por el paisaje sonoro fantasmal contenido en el poema, inicié una investigación artística desde la composición musical y la creación  audiovisual, dirigida a explorar los restos y huellas de aquella forma de vida que inició en 1871, y terminó en 1995, con el cierre del sistema ferroviario nacional. Restos y huellas de un tejido mortuorio que yace en los pueblos, barrios y ciudades, documentado por estudios de diversa índole. Casi 20 años después de su desarticulación, se retomó el uso de un tren interurbano en la Gran Area Metropolitana del país, reutilizando las antiguas máquinas y estaciones. En 2017 dio inicio una campaña para modernizar el servicio con un tren eléctrico, proyecto aún en licitación. Esta ponencia compartirá algunos resultados de una investigación artística audiovisual todavía en proceso,  realizada a partir de un estudio geobiopolítico, que centra su atención en “el ruido” de los trenes como sello particular de la ciudad en los últimos años, con su destartalado recorrido por una capital caótica, a la cual se pretende “dar orden”, gentrificándola. Se analiza consecuentemente, el espacio público como ideología, a partir del estudio sonoro de la experiencia “ciudad”, y las prácticas artísticas al servicio de estos procesos, específicamente los vinculados con la gentrificación.


16:30 – Coffee-break


17:00 – Participatory Sonic Arts as a Tool for Urban Inquiry | Pedro Rebelo and Matilde Meireles (Queen’s University, Belfast)


18:00 –  Closing round table | Sonic Engagements with Touristified Urban Ambiances with Daniel Paiva (IGOT, UL), Gonçalo Antunes de Oliveira and Iñigo Sánchez Fuarros (INET-md, FCSH/NOVA)


The final program can be downloaded in a pdf version here


Photo credits: Jasemin Khaleli

Support: Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT), Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas (Universidade Nova de Lisboa), Instituto de Etnomusicologia (INET-MD), Câmara Municipal de Lisboa.