December 5th and 6th at 7:30pm


The World According to Sound is bringing their hour-long surround sound live experience to the Cherry Artspace in Ithaca. Listeners will sit in total darkness, surrounded by a ring of powerful loudspeakers, awash in sounds. The first night features sounds from all over the world, and the second is a sonic exploration of Cornell University.

On the first night, December 5, you will hear bridges and ants and the gurgle of mud pots. The sounds will transport you inside another person’s head, to the reverberant inner chambers of the Hagia Sophia, and back in time a hundred years to the streets of Berlin. The 30 sounds in the show include a musical performance by a washing machine, a symphony of athletic grunts, and the disturbing howl Marco Polo heard while crossing the Gobi Desert.

On the second night, December 6, we will go deep into the sounds of Cornell. For one semester, Sam and Chris listened to the university. They listened to dorms and dining halls and frats; to a particle accelerator, conversational Latin, and the stomach of a cow; to dozens of 19th-century kinetic machines, the mechanics of a pipe organ, and the stomp of step dancing; to hockey skates, taiko drums, and fencing sabres; to research on mating spiders, vibrating deserts, dying plants, and outer space; to wire recordings, records, film reels, cassettes, and VHS tapes hidden in archives several floors underground; to water in a gorge, the rustle of leaves, a symphony of insects and all the sounds made in an entire day on campus. It will be a university in a way you’ve never experienced one before.

CHRIS HOFF is the co-founder of The World According to Sound, a 90-second podcast all about sound. Before that he was the senior audio engineer with KALW News’ Crosscurrents. It was in the early 2000s in Berlin that Chris uncovered his enthusiasm for the then-burgeoning internet radio phenomenon known as podcasting. So after getting his feet wet in broadcast journalism at CNN Berlin in 2006, Chris moved back to San Francisco and settled into his work mixing and making news stories at KALW public radio. 

SAM HARNETT reports on technocapitalism for KQED public radio in San Francisco. For over a decade, he has contributed regularly to national programs like Morning Edition, The World and Marketplace. Sam has reported over 200 feature stories, including series on California’s marijuana “green rush” and the nuclear disaster in Fukushima. Sam released his first podcast in 2014, a one-season show called Driving With Strangers, which featured stories told to a cab driver. 

In 2015, Sam and Chris launched the World According to Sound, a podcast and live show that has been featured for its radical approach on WBEZ,The Washington Post, The New York Times, and other outlets. The podcast has been played on NPR, and the pair has toured the live show in over 50 venues, including Cornell, UVA, and WNYC’s Greene Space.