Sounds of the Birds

Sounds of the Birds

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The language of birds is translated for solo piano and illuminated by bold new visuals from Sheffield-based design team Human to create an immersive and multi-sensory experience.

From the brightly insistent call of the skylark to the menacing tones of the tawny owl, Olivier Messiaen’s Catalogue d’Oiseaux reproduces the songs of different birds, vividly capturing their interactions with a series of stunning French landscapes.

Our adventure through science, music, nature and imagination is led by Tim Birkhead (ornithologist and Professor of Behavioural Ecology at the University of Sheffield), with pianist Noah Kang performing Messiaen’s monumental masterpiece.

At 6:10pm there is an optional pre-concert talk by Professor Peter Hill about Messiaen and birds. The main performance starts at 7.30pm.


Noah Kang is a talented young pianist studying with the University’s Department of Music. Producer Stewart Campbell is the artistic director of University of Sheffield Concerts.

Professor Tim Birkhead FRS is an acclaimed ornithologist and popular teacher in our Department of Animal and Plant Sciences. He has received a number of awards for his innovative teaching and has written six popular books about the life of birds.

Human is a Sheffield-based creative agency specialising in CGI animation and virtual reality.