BBC Set to Twist Knobs and Make Weird Sounds Again as Radiophonic Workshop is Revived Online

By Jon Partridge on at

Back in 1958, the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop was established with the aim to create new sounds, music and sound effects for BBC programmes (including our beloved Doctor Who, of course), as well as becoming an important and innovative electronic music studio in the UK. The studio closed its doors in 1998 after a slow decline, but now, 14 years later, its coming back, although in a slightly different form.

Originally based in the BBC's Maida Vale studio, the workshop is being reborn, fittingly, into a digital form and will live online as part of, which is a new digital arts media service created in partnership between the BBC and the Arts Council. Composer Matthew Herbert, who is known for his use of "found sounds", has been appointed creative director of the new Workshop. He will be leading seven other collaborators, including himself, in making new sounds and music, much like the studio did in the past.

His first work for The New Radiophonic Workshop takes audio from 25 previous projects featured on the website, creating a so-called "curious murmur of activity." The other artists joining Herbert in the New Radiophonic Workshop are Mica Levi, from the band Micachu and the Shapes; Yann Seznec; Max de Wardener; theatre director Lyndsey Turner; Patrick Bergel and broadcast technologist Tony Churnside.

Maybe they'll give a new take on the Doctor Who theme, eh? For old time's sake? [BBC]

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