May 19th 2018

Decode the signals and undertones of plants, animals, and learn to recognize the calls of Chicago area frogs! This event is free and open to the public.
More often heard than seen, frogs and toads are considered bellwether species. Their presence or absence serve as early warning signs of environmental damage and ecosystem change.

Among all the sounds of urban life, our evening soundwalk with Eric Leonardson introduces some of the sounds of the several Midwestern frog and toad species, as well as their presence within the overall West Ridge soundscape; raising the question: how do all the earth’s creatures communicate among their species and across the range of their sounds?

“Making a conscious decision to do something so simple [as deciding to listen] opens up your awareness, and allows for a deeper connection to the place you are walking.”

“Soundwalks have roots in acoustic ecology, which is a field commonly associated with social sciences in the academic world. Acoustic Ecology is a multidisciplinary field that is specifically focused on sound and its relationship to aesthetics, engineering, music, science, and psychology.”

“All these disciplines share knowledge to understand the importance of sound in terms of human communications,” says Eric…overall the soundwalks raise awareness of these different relationships and can provide insight to how we design our environment.”

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Eric’s ideas about soundwalking as ecological practice are informed by a Canadian composer, Hildegard Westerkamp.

He suggests you may like to read about her approach to soundwalking

Learn more about Eric’s work at and

Official Website

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