The Reading Room #29: The Edges of the Voice

The Reading Room #29: The edges of the voice
December 8, 2018
Stroom Den Haag, The Hague

Guest Readers: Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman, Amelia Groom

Texts by: Anne Carson, Eduardo Kohn

The Edges Of The Voice

In this cluster we will be delving into texts and practices that explore the limits and potentials of vocal expression. We will be looking at two texts that approach questions of voice and silence/ing through very different entry points; that of the non-human semiotic worlds of the rainforest, and that of the gendered politics inherent in determining how and whether voices are heard. Departing from their respective practices dealing with the question of the voice, Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman and Amelia Groom will guide us through experimental and in-depth discourses that may broaden our perceptions of where we hear voices, when we speak up, and when we deliberately deploy silence.

The second part of the cluster is a workshop led by artist/vocalist Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman, in which we will explore the texts and our many voices, by assembling an experimental “non-human choir”. Aurélie will guide us through physical and vocal exercises focusing on onomatopoeia, non-linguistic sounds, and the untapped possibilities within the repertoires of our non-adult and non-human voices (baby, animal, spirits, etc.). The workshop is suitable for complete beginners as well as professionals in the fields of vocal practice, and is open to participants of any age.

More information on the workshop here.


There is a limited number of spaces available for this event. As this is a discussion, you are expected to have read the provided texts before attending. Please reserve a spot by sending an email to We will also provide you with a copy of the texts once you have RSVP’ed.

Invited Guests:

Amelia Groom is a Berlin-based writer, and currently a postdoctoral research fellow at ICI Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry, where she is working on an art historical project about stones. Since 2014 she has taught on the Critical Studies MA at the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam, and she was also the theory tutor for the Master of Voice programme at the Sandberg (2016-2018).

Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman’s oeuvre balances between radio, installation, performance, vocal art and composition, with her extensive collection of unique field recordings and soundscapes from rural and urban East-Africa serving as the common denominator. Soundbite by soundbite she transforms and molds all those sounds into something she describes as “Afrique Concrète”. In addition to this, she constantly premieres new music by emerging young composers from around the globe in a multiplicity of styles. Lierman is a former radio maker and host at the national Belgian broadcasting corporation and co-created two Nurse With Wound albums.


The Reading Room is an event series dedicated to creating a community-oriented, public platform for encounters with contemporary ideas on art and society. At its core, The Reading Room series revolves around the reading of texts provided by invited guests – cultural theorists, philosophers and curators – who join our diverse community in an open discussion while providing context and perspective.

The series stems from a belief that keeping a close connection to historical and emerging theories on art and culture is invaluable to artists. Especially in the 21st century, where theory, practice and social engagement in the arts seem to merge ever more seamlessly.

The Reading Room is organised by Jonathan Reus, Sissel Marie Tonn and Flora Reznik. The program is supported by Stroom Den Haag and the Dutch Creative Industries Fund, and is produced by the Instrument Inventors Initiative.

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