north east scotland's festival of new music

sound 2011

sound, North East Scotland's festival of new music, is driven by the passion to make new music more accessible to audiences of all ages and backgrounds. It embraces a network of local organisations to produce a varied programme of events exploring new music. The festival brings together a large range of different genres of music to appeal to a wide variety of tastes and encourage people to discover new sounds and widen their musical horizons.

The 2011 festival will take place from the 20th October – 13th November (tbc).

Themed weekends during the festival will include:

  • A showcase of Scottish talent organised in partnership with New Music Scotland
  • A weekend of Nordic music (including groups and composers from Norway, Sweden…)
  • A vocal weekend (Exaudi Vocal Ensemble with the Endymion Ensemble…)


Within a short space of time [sound] has become a magnet for enthusiasts and big names.

Susan Nickalls, Scotland on Sunday, 17 October 2010

Once again, Aberdeenshire is bracing itself for its annual jamboree of contemporary music. The whole concept of sound is extraordinary: around 60 events parcelled into a three-and-a-half-week festival, ranging from city venues in Aberdeen to the further-flung reaches of Fraserburgh, Portsoy and Banchory, and featuring such major artists as the Hebrides Ensemble, the Smith Quartet, and composers Sally Beamish and Aberdeen University-based Pete Stollery […] But the most refreshing thing about this bold North-east initiative is its propensity to initiate lively interaction between the amateur and the professional artist.

Kenneth Walton, The Scotsman, 13 October 2010

Edinburgh might dominate the Scottish festive skyline, but in 5 short years, sound, North East Scotland's exuberant celebration of the 'new', has proved itself an increasingly ambitious 'postscript'.

Paul Riley, BBC Music Magazine, October 2010

The sound festival is hugely important to the development of contemporary music… and a brilliant outlet for local musicians.

Rona Cook, quoted in The Press and Journal, 16 October 2010


sound, an initiative of Woodend Arts Association in collaboration with the University of Aberdeen, operates largely as a network of local and some national organisations. The 2010 network also included Aberdeen Art Gallery, Aberdeen Chamber Music Concerts, Aberdeen International Youth Festival, Aberdeen Sinfonietta, Cantamus Hodie, Citymoves Dance Agency, Clashnettie Arts Centre, DanceLive, Deveron Arts, Duff House, Interesting Music Promotions, Inverurie Music, London's John Armitage Memorial Concert (JAM), Lang Byre Gallery, Left Bank, The Lemon Tree, Love Music Festival, Lunchbreaks at Cowdray Hall, Monymusk Arts Trust, Museum of Scottish Lighthouses, Music Centeral, Newton Dee Community, North East of Scotland Music School, NYOS Futures, Peacock Visual Arts, Salmon Bothy, Strathdee Music Club, University of Aberdeen Music Prize and Woodend Music Society.

If you'd like to be kept informed of what's happening by email and receive the festival leaflet please contact us on and give us your name, postal address and email address.

sound festival logo

sound c/o Woodend BarnBurn O'BennieBanchoryAB31 5QAScotland.