Manufacturing Emotion

One of the most interesting articles I have read in recent weeks is this little gem about the man tasked with conceiving and designing the ambient sound experience at Disneyland.

Here is an example of a ambient sound system designed in support of an even greater engineered environment spread across a vast physical space and dictated by a wide range of thematic and emotional content. The designer talks of the difficulties of creating a seamless sound experience across such an environment. It’s a fascinating exercise in sound design, especially in the pre-digital era.

The important point I noted here is that in situations such as these, a successful ambient environment is never consciously acknowledged by its listeners. Instead, it should unconsciously bring about a desired state of mind. In the same way that the designer tweaks the individual parameters of the sounds, so he tweaks the feelings and emotions of those listening to them.


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