Fiera del Suono

Discover the arts of the fairgrounds in an immersive sound experience.
A special new attraction, a fair of sounds, will be presented in the LocHal in Tilburg during the Tilburg Fair, the largest fairground of Europe. The 60-meter-long space features large colorful inflatable abstractions of carnival rides where you can hear the history of the fair via “augmented audio.

Here you will experience how for centuries the fair was a place where many art forms such as live theater and dance were accessible to a wide audience, but also new technological inventions such as photography, the steam engine, electricity and virtual realities were presented for the first time. The fairground as a historic incubator of creativity and innovation.

A fortune teller, with the voice of the famous Dutch actress Hetty Heyting, takes you from a crystal ball on a journey through time where sounds of performers, circus horses, barrel organs and roller coasters lead you into the future. Using a location-controlled audio system via open headphones as well as an audioscape of no less than sixty speakers and subwoofers, a unique landscape of sounds is formed. Depending on where you are, you will hear a different part of the story each time.

Development Program: Iterative Design
Fiera del Suono is a project by media art collective DROPSTUFF MEDIA in collaboration with the Netherlands Institute for Sound & Vision, Tilburg City Museum and student groups from Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, Utrecht University of Applied Sciences and Fontys Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Tilburg.

This project is supported by Cultuurloket DigitALL and the national development program Innovatielabs of the Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie and CLICKNL, in which parties from the cultural and creative sector investigate current challenges. Project participating in Innovatielabs are involved in the continuous development duri two years in a process of care-named ‘iterative design’; presentation, evaluation and further development. Cultuurloket DigitALL helps the cultural sector to strengthen the contact with the public through digital technology.

Fiera del Suono focuses on developing new ways to bring auditory (heritage) collections and creative stories closer to a wider audience. Sound & Vision, the Tilburg Regional Archives and private audio collections provide material for this purpose. New dialogues have also been recorded, including the voices of Hetty Heyting, Saskia Temmink, Thomas de Bres, Elisa Beuger, Kevin Klein, Nur Dabagh, Rick van den Belt, Cindy Paans, Erik Geurssen and Paul R. Disbergen.

Student groups from the three participating colleges participated in the development of the storyline and will conduct audience research and suggest design modifications in the fall of 2023 and spring of 2024. After the first experimental edition in Tilburg, this aural fair will travel on to other locations in the Netherlands. For example, during spring break in 2024, the project will be presented at Beeld & Geluid in Hilversum.

Fair City Tilburg
With more than 1 million visitors annually, the Tilburg Fair is one of the largest public events in the Netherlands. The city thus provides a special context for Fiera del Suono to premiere in the spectacular building of the new Library De LocHal, just next to Central Station and right next to the fairgrounds.

DROPSTUFF MEDIA has been developing the project ‘The Fair Grounds’ since 2017, connecting and presenting forms of popular culture, heritage, arts and technology to a wide audience.

Developed in collaboration with:
Script: Albert Meijer and Thomas de Bres
Art direction: Thomas de Bres
Animations: Eva Kröse
Video: Ard van der Veldt
Music arrangement: Yannick Verhoeven and Brian Oomens.
Sound system spatial audio and production: usomo by FRAMED immersive projects.

Immersieve Audio Experience


Concept and Production:

In collaboration with:
The Netherlands Institute for Sound & Vision, Stadsmuseum Tilburg, Hogeschool van Amsterdam, Hogeschool Utrecht, en Fontys Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Tilburg

Supported by:
Cultuurloket DigitALL
Fonds Erfgoed Tilburg