International Year of Sound 2020-2021


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Special Projects

Hearing the Past : A virtual immersive audio concert for the ears Recreating Notre-Dame Cathedral’s 850th anniversary performance of « La Vierge »

In honour of the International Year of Sound and for the 1-year memorial of the Notre-Dame cathedral fire, a team of researchers and sound engineers has recreated a virtual reconstruction of a recent performance recording made in the cathedral.

As part of the celebrations of the 850-year anniversary of the construction of Notre-Dame de Paris, the cathedral welcomed a performance of « La Vierge » by Jules Massenet, under the direction of Patrick Fourniller. This performance was recorded in detail by the Conservatoire de Paris (CNSMDP) on 24-April-2013.

To share this performance with those who could not attend, and to honor the monumental acoustics of the cathedral, a team of acoustic researchers and sound engineers have taken these recordings and coupled them to an acoustical 3D model of Notre-Dame, created from measurements on the night of the concert (developed at LAM-IJLRDA, Sorbonne Université). The result is a recreation of the concert that can be experienced from several listening positions, offering a unique 3D-audio experience approaching being transported into the past.

The virtual concert, as well as descriptions of the reconstruction process, are available at :

  • Country: France
  • Org. Responsible: Sorbonne Université & Conservatoire de Paris
  • Location: International On-line
  • Start date: 15 April 2020
  • End date: continually available
  • Contact person: Brian FG Katz
  • Contact email:
  • URL:

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