Sound can transcend time and space, taking us on a journey of memories and listening, just like on the third floor of Nanxing Temple, a place to worship the Jade Emperor, where flocks of sparrows shuttle back and forth, their sounds echoing in the temple. This 270-year-old (founded in 1750) temple has witnessed the area’s development and serves as a faith center. Behind it, there’s also a puppet show celebrating Mazu’s birthday, creating this soundscape.
Time and Space Soaring
This segment offers rich soundscaping material. Therefore, in the music design, I transform musical elements into the temple’s incense, starting with the sparrows’ chirping and the drumming and singing of the puppet show’s performance. Then, I transition to the recitation before the shrine, much like how worshipers pass through these soundscapes.
Children and pigeons set the overture for this melody. The black bulbul in the city also contributes to its music. In this rare urban green space, there’s a typical urban rhythm.
Childlike Chatter of Birds
Using the pitch of the notes (D-A-B-G) from the temple bell as the intro and motif, the composition begins with the interaction between the xylophone and the sounds of hammering on wooden planks. Then, it incorporates the plucking of strings and xylophone using the temple bell’s motif. The playful sounds of children resonate back and forth, bringing liveliness and a childlike quality. Meanwhile, the motif of the temple bell continues to blend into the background using synthesizers.
Entering the lush courtyard, you step into a 1920s family atmosphere. The living room is elegantly decorated, and the nostalgic songs of Lin Hau play in the background. A phonograph plays the sounds of a fountain outside. In the background, a woman selling Gelato engages in conversation. Time and space intersect here, sparking different dialogues.
Sihwei Elementary School
The music design in this segment emphasizes echoing Professor Laila Fan’s concept of time and space intersecting to create different dialogues. Therefore, the music begins by evoking the nostalgic songs played by the phonograph, symbolizing the old times of the 1920s. Then, it gradually brings the scene back to the present day in 2023, using the ambient sounds of flowing water, birdsong, and conversations while faintly hearing the nostalgic sounds of the past in the distance.