Open City Documentary Festival

across London
Oct 11 — Nov 8

An Introduction to Soundscape Composition (In-person)

5 Wednesday evenings, 6:30-9pm UK time

Led by award-winning sound artist Nikki Sheth, learn how to create your own soundscape compositions through this practice-led, audio-based course.

Price £310 / £275 Students / £255 UCL Students

This in-person course is for beginners looking to work creatively and develop their skills in field recording to produce their own soundscape composition. We will look at fundamental theoretical and conceptual debates in the area, the basics of field recording, acoustic ecology and soundwalking, how to get started with Reaper and how to creatively compose with environmental recordings. At the end of the course, you will have a collection of your own field recordings to work with in the future and a completed soundscape composition. This course engages with and intersects art, climate change, ecology, soundscape, field recording and musical composition.

  • Participants are required to bring their own headphones and are welcome to bring any field recording equipment if they have any
  • No previous experience is required but some basic audio knowledge would be useful
  • Participants will be expected to complete small listening and practical tasks outside of class
  • Participants will have access to UCL East’s sound recording booths for the duration of the course


Learning outcomes:

  • Gain confidence using field recording equipment through practical sessions
  • Engage with a new way of listening and working with environmental sounds
  • Gain an understanding of fundamental theory and history of soundscape composition
  • Learn how to use the DAW Reaper
  • Learn useful skills and methodologies in creating an engaging soundscape composition that are transferable and can be used in the context of soundwalks, performances, radio, film, installation and more


Course outline

The following topics are only indicative:

Session 1
Field recording

Session 2
Soundscape Composition
Acoustic Ecology
Getting started with Reaper 1

Session 3
Soundwalking and Sound Maps
Getting started with Reaper 2

Session 4
Getting started with Reaper 3
Soundscape Composition (creative composition)

Session 5
Tutorials and sharing session of final works


“Nikki is a very thorough and efficient teacher, her way of explaining the practical elements made it so enjoyable and her course materials were very in depth.” – Previous course participant

“Nikki is a great teacher, very fun, knowledgeable and thoughtful. Highly recommend her class if you want to learn and produce a soundscape composition.” – Previous course participant


This course takes place across 5 Wednesday evenings (11th October to 8th November), from 6:30 to 9pm.

If you have any enquiries regarding this course, please contact or call +442031084774.

Booking closes at 12pm on Monday 9th October.

Image: Anyox (Jessica Johnson & Ryan Ermacora, 2022)

Course location: Open City Docs, UCL East (Marshgate), 7 Sidings Street, Stratford, London, E20 2AE



Nikki Sheth


Nikki Sheth is an internationally recognised sound artist and composer. Her practice involves field recording, soundscape composition, multimedia installations, sound mapping and soundwalking. She uses sound as a medium to bring a voice to the environment and encourage a wider awareness of the natural world. She has received international recognition for the quality of her field recordings and soundscape compositions. She has been awarded a Sound and Music award, nominated for the Phonurgia Nova Awards, received an Honourable Mention for the Sound of the Year Awards and nominated for Ivor Novello Composer Award in 2021.