Soundtrack Your Life

Dublin’s Stephen’s Green now joins parks worldwide in enjoying this immersive experience

by Brian Bowe

If, like me, you’re tired of concocting the perfect music playlist to soundtrack your daily step count goal, then quit Spotify, download the Ellen Reid Soundwalk app and get yourself to Dublin’s sweet oasis of green calm, St Stephen’s Green.

Dublin’s oasis, St. Stephen’s Green

The Dublin city centre park has recently joined famous public parks across the world to have a Soundwalk experience created by Pulitzer prize-winning composer Ellen Reid specifically for our green urban space adored by locals and tourists alike. This exciting new project mixes public art and music to illuminate natural environments. The immersive audio experience can be accessed via a GPS-enabled app, that when downloaded, takes users of the iconic and historic park on a sonic adventure, offering differing soundscapes while bringing music to the public in a new and innovative way.

“I so enjoyed working in St. Stephen’s Green on Soundwalk,” Reid said. “The park was a beautiful and generous collaborator, and this iteration is truly one of my favourites. I hope visitors will try the Soundwalk multiple times, during different seasons and times of day, and find new inspiration in familiar

The installation is curated especially for visitors of St Stephen’s Green, reflecting its many beloved spaces through sound, turning a stroll into a marvellous, musical exploration. The experience is entirely user-guided: the path you choose dictates the music you hear, and no two visits will be exactly the same.

Ellen Reid (image: Classical Post)

Reid started composing the soundscape when visiting the National Concert Hall (NCH) in Dublin at the start of the year to hear the National Symphony Orchestra perform one of her compositions. The result is an innovative blend of public art, music and technology, creating an immersive journey full of fresh perspectives.

“The National Concert Hall is delighted to work with composer Ellen Reid on this exciting new project bringing music to the Irish public in a new and innovative way,” said Robert Read, CEO of the National Concert Hall. “The aim of our programme strategy at NCH is to engage, surprise and inspire the public through music. We feel this project does just that, offering users of the iconic site an immersive musical experience that is unique and deeply personal which we hope will also be inspiring and uplifting. I would like to thank our project partners the Office of Public Works (OPW) and our neighbours IPUT Real Estate Dublin in making this possible and to Ellen for her stimulating music.”

Image: wikimedia

St Stephen’s Green now joins the likes of New York City’s Central Park and the Golden Gate Park in San Francisco in having a specially tailored Soundwalk composition designed to enhance the visitor experience. The app is available to download now by using the QR code on information boards dotted around the park. The installation will remain available throughout 2023, and is ideal for sunny afternoons, so let’s hope summer holds up its end of the bargain.

Ellen Reid Soundwalk was co-commissioned by the New York Philharmonic, Saratoga Performing Arts Centre, Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, Mann Centre for the Performing Arts in association with The Fairmount Park Conservancy, and the Britt Festival Orchestra. The Ellen Reid Soundwalk is made possible in part by the support of Mindscapes, Wellcome’s International Cultural Programme about mental health.

You can further explore Ellen’s music at