vincent andrisani

phd | sound studies | simon fraser university

sound studies researcher exploring sound and listening in the city of havana, cuba.


i'm a vancouver-based sound studies scholar and practitioner working at the intersection of sound studies, urban geography, and cuban studies. my work has been presented at conferences and festivals internationally, and has been published in a variety of academic journals and media outlets including Soundscape: the Journal of Acoustic EcologySounding Out! Blog, and at PechaKucha.

my interest in sound began with the many years i spent as a musician performing and teaching in toronto, canada. over the course of my career, i played in a variety of settings, on a number of recordings, and across a range of musical styles. in both toronto and in havana, cuba, i studied with local drummers and percussionists, including havana-based drummer and composer Giraldo Piloto Barreto. my experiences as a performer fuelled my interest in the history of popular music in cuba, which evolved into a master's level research project that marked my foray into sound studies.

today, my research includes not only the sounds of music, but also, the sounds of everyday spaces and places. my work in this area began with the humber river soundscape project (2008), a collaborative art-based initiative that explored the sounds and sights of one of southern ontario's largest watersheds. following the completion of this project, i moved to the city of vancouver, where i began my doctoral studies in the the school of communication at simon fraser university. during this time, i travelled back to the city of havana, where i conducted fieldwork and held an academic residency at funcación fernando ortiz. the result was a project titled inventing havana in thin air: sound space, and the making of sonic citizenship (2017), which explores the politics of sound and listening in the city of havana.

i currently instruct "the cultural production of popular music", an upper-division course in the school of communication at sfu, home of the world soundscape project and the birthplace of soundscape studies. during my time at sfu i've had the opportunity to participate in, and to extend, the school's longstanding tradition of sound studies.