Many places you would like to see are just off the map and many things you want to know are just out of sight or a little beyond your reach. But one day you’ll reach them all, for what you learn today, for no reason at all, will help you discover all the wonderful secrets of tomorrow.
Hear Be Dragons (HBD) is a community-based education and creative arts initiative, developed by Kyla-Rose Smith and Hannah Loewenthal, that brings participants together to map the sonic landscape of their lives. This unique experiential education project investigates the ways in which sound and the urban environment influence our quality of life, our perception of history and memory, and our notions of identity, place and time.
The title HBD plays on the medieval saying “here be dragons,” which historically denoted unchartered territories – often believed to be the home of dragons or other mysterious phenomena – on maps. HBD aimed to awaken the auditory senses and equip its workshop participants with the tools and language to capture and document the unexplored territory of sound, while equipping them with a basic understanding of sound recording and editing technology.
HBD reconnects individuals with their immediate urban environments through the medium of sound, using familiar technology in the form of smart phones. Through the workshop series and an exchange programme in the form of 'sonic pen-pals', HBD has created a platform for expression and the investigation of issues affecting our urban environments. This facilitated exchange allowes individuals to share their common experience of urban life and gain a greater understanding of one another.
HBD provides its participants with an opportunity to explore the unknown, awaken the senses, and discover the ‘foreign’ and ‘familiar’ territory of the city and exchange these findings with communities around the world.
This track was created during the first HBD workshop in the township of Nyanga in Cape Town, South Africa.