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Immersive sound experience launches in Bristol with 100 voices from hospital staff, patients and visitors

Last updated: 07/11/2023

100 VOICES The Galleries

Photographed (from left to right): Bea Hankey (Producer) , David Sheppard (Sound Designer), Hannah Conway (Composer) and Steph Clarke (Producer) from SOUND VOICE

Voices from 100 people at 12 hospitals, including the Bristol Royal Infirmary and St Michael’s Hospital, are part of a new immersive sound experience in Bristol.

Located in a birch wooden roundhouse in The Galleries shopping centre, the ‘100 VOICES’ experience has been created from five months of research, workshops and conversations with staff, patients and visitors in hospitals across four NHS Foundation Trusts, including University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW).

During November, audiences can experience 360-degree audio, immersed in the anonymous voices of 100 people from different hospital communities reflecting on their daily lives and work, the challenges, joys, inspirations and losses.

Four operatic songs – ‘4 PORTRAITS’ - have also been produced as part of the project, voiced by the fictional characters of The Midwife, The Porter, The Patient and The Manager.

Emily Malins, Arts Programme Manager at UHBW, said: “'The Arts and Culture programme at UHBW is very proud to have been involved in this exciting project and want to thank all of our staff and patients that helped develop the piece. 

“We are pleased to be sharing this unique immersive experience with you and the wider community of Bristol over the next fortnight in The Galleries.”

The installation, created by SOUND VOICE in partnership with UHBW, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Lancashire Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, is in place from 6 to 17 November (2023).

The ‘100 VOICES’ experience runs in Bristol first, before heading to Preston, London and Cambridge across November and December. Visit www.100voices.uk for full tour locations, dates and times.

Hazel Gould and Hannah Conway, who created the sound installation, said: “100 VOICES is an immersive sound and music work in which we hear fragments of 100 conversations recorded in June and July 2023 in twelve hospitals across the country. We seek to represent a true cross-section of the incredible encounters we had during our time in the hospitals.

“The voices that we hear span age, class, race and gender, displaying the enormous range of identities, backgrounds, perspectives, and experience that congregate under the umbrella of the NHS. This piece aims to be an authentic snapshot of people, place, and time. We have created music from the sound of the voices but the words remain unchanged. 100 VOICES is an audio experience, and whilst transcripts will be made available, the primary experience is one of listening.”

Dates and times of the installation in Bristol:

Ground Floor, The Galleries Shopping Centre, 25 Union Gallery, Broadmead, Bristol, BS1 3XD

  • Monday 6 November, 1pm to 6pm
  • Tuesday 7 to Saturday 11 November, 9am to 6pm
  • Sunday 12 November, 10am to 5pm
  • Monday 13 to Friday 17 November, 9am to 6pm

Please be advised:

100 VOICES contains honest references to life in hospital including critical care and end of life.