Podcast Journal Brasilis with Vanessa De Michelis @ Berlin School of Sound & Errant Sound Radio / Colaboradio FR-BB

Radio Show produced by Laura Mello and Vanessa De Michelis
for Berlin School of Sound / Errant Sound Radio #4

Tue  02.02.21  20:00 (Berlin) 16:00 (Brasília)
for Berlin School of Sound / Errant Sound Radio
live stream on fr-bb
or on 88vier
and on 88.4 FM in Berlin and 90.7 FM in Potsdam

Sonic Recordings are not disembodied and impartial art works, they hold not only the sound matter, but also our context, as listeners. The year 2020 was a strange one: while most people tried to stay at home, wherever that was, others attempted to support their families and reach ‚homes‘ elsewhere. 
In December and January 2020/21, Laura and Vanessa travelled 13,000 km back to Brazil after years as expats in Austria, Germany and the UK. How have their sonic perceptions changed and have been influenced by migration experiences? They collected recordings, writings and voice notes on what they had heard and deliberated during this period. For the production of the radio show, they inspired each other daily through the exchange of recordings and writings between Belo Horizonte, Blumenau and Vienna. The result is a cut-up radio journal with recordings, associations and commentaries on their experiences with life in and between Brazil, Germany, England and Austria.
Starting from this perspective, the radio piece brings the global south to vibrate on Berlin School of Sound / Errant Sound Radio. This podcast combines documentary and artistic perspectives making use of sound as a medium in its various formats: sound art, field recordings, experimental and adventurous music interwoven with diary entries and reports.The idea is to focus not only on the sound works, but also to explore the often lonely phenomenology of listening from the perspective of the migrant returning to their hometown and families while in lockdown.

Vanessa De Michelis & Laura Mello

Full transcription of Journal Brasilis:

Field recording, Rain in Blumenau, Brazil

“Hello out there, this is Laura Mello, I am a member of the ES collective. The Errant Sound collective is cooperation with Berlin School of Sound Radio, producing podcasts. And we broadcast them on Colaboradio, which is also part of Freies Radio Berlin Brandenburg 88.4 in Berlin and 90.7 in Potsdam.

Hello, I’m Vanessa De Michelis, I am part of Sonora, the Brazilian network for feminisms, sound art and contemporary music.Thank you Jeremy for inviting us for the third edition of the program. This is Journal Brasilis, soundscapes and collages from, and associated with,  our sonic journals in Brazil. 

Both of us have travelled to the south and southeast of the country, To quarantine with our families, during December 2020 and January 2021.  The original materials were field recordings from Blumenau and Belo Horizonte, which expanded into free sonic associations.

December, the 22nd 2020. It´s summer and it´s raining.
We are now listening to the sounds of my hometown Blumenau, Brazil.

Active listening to the sounds around our place every day.“

Field recording, Cicades orchestra

“The sounding rituals of the animal world, day by day. What a trustful experience!”

Field recording, Navegantes airport: “Proteja-se!” (Protect yourself)

“Every listener can become a sound artist!”

Recording, Flight LATAM, “Ladies and gentleman, we ask you to wear a face mask and cover your mouth and nose all time during your stay on board.”

“Musical birds.”

Field recording, Birds from Blumenau

Laura Mello, piano and voice: “Yes, we are the piano players. The many piano players. Many, many, many, many of them exist.”

“Unidentified sounding objects”

Field recording, Unidentified bird in Blumenau

“C O n V I D e – Convide, in portuguese, means invite! Invite 19 people? Or 19 people including me, my mother and Neni?”

(Whatsapp Audio, anonymous) “Bom dia, eu tô com uma dúvida ali, eu queria pedir ajuda de vocês do grupo que eu sei que nós aqui do grupo tem uma gente bem inteligente aqui. Eu to iscuitando as notícias no rádio e olhando na tv, eles tão falando bastante de isolamento social, que a gente não pode spazierenfahren na casa de ninguém, nem pode vir ninguém spazieren na casa da gente também. Mas ali eles falam também em COnVIDe 19, como é que funciona isso dali? A gente pode convida 19 pessoas pra vir na casa da gente? Ou é 19 pessoas com a gente que já mora na casa da gente, quenem por exemplo assim, na minha casa é eu, a mãe e o Neni, então a gente pode convidar mais 19 pessoas ou tem que ser 19 pessoas com nós já ali que moremo ali. Alguém consegue me ajudar ali pra gente entender isto direitinho?“

Convida 19 by Laura Mello

Junglow Drift by Vanessa De Michelis

Field recording, Wind in Itapema, SC, Brazil

Field recording, Flight Lufthansa: “Ladies and gentleman, the Austrian government requires all passengers travelling to Austria to register online and to complete the Pre-Travel Clearance upon arrival. In case you have not yet completed the Travel Clearance, you, you will, you, contact the cabine crew and we distribute a quarantine form to you. You are required to complete this form and to submit it upon immigration. All passengers are subject to a 10-days quarantine which can be ended at the earliest after 5 days by providing a negative PCR or a anti-gen test. Thank you for your attention and your cooperation. Thank you.”

Laura Mello, piano and voice. “The fittest, the richest, the….”

Field recording, Ferry boat from Denmark to Germany

“Cultural appropriation”

Field recording, Bird riff, voices from Laura and Lucio Mello, ”Pior que é!” (You´re right!)

Funky Bird by Laura Mello

“Insistent birds”

“Mr. Bird von Blumenau: please get in touch with our production as soon as possible. We couldn´t find you anywhere, in order to pay for the royalties.”


“Jeanette Gusko: Privileges are often invisible for the ones who have them. For the ones who don´t have them, they are quite evident.”

Recording: Radio sounds

“Dr. Marimba Ani cited in Rasgo (Cut) by Rômulo Alexis and Rosa Couto”

“The way the system of European control works is that you have to accept a concept of reality which makes them superior. If you deny that, the thing will not work. And they will lose their control.”

“For the whiteness, it is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of its privileges. It is necessary to imagine the end of the world. Colonial. Racial. Capital.” (Text by Rômulo Alexis and Rosa Couto)

Suspensão e Queda, original soundtrack by Vanessa De Michelis

Poem and sound collage by Vanessa De Michelis:


I look up at the sky and see the Southern Cross.
London is northeast from here,
About 8.000 kms.

That is,
13 hours by plane,
13 days by ship,
3 seconds by text.

In terms of cities, of largeness,
I’m in the 4th of Brazil. 
800 meters high,
on the 8th floor.

I can see Orion from here,
I use to remember the name 
Of each start, of its belt.
Was Bethlen to the left?

I can’t remember their names now,
but their stories, I never forgot.
Orion is also known here as Ogun, the story goes:
He holds a knife on his belt.

I remember 5 years ago, before London,
This 8th floor felt quiet, close to, Silent.
The 8th floor is noisy now
Omnipresent (hummm)

Gentrification and speculation increase…
There are 5 new, 20 storey, apartment buildings around here.
That is times 8 people per floor and times 4 car garages per people, polluting my ex-silent 8th floor.

(but I listen, I try to listen)

In Brazil, perhaps due to luck, 
perhaps due to resistance,
the birds never gave up singing.
They travel trebly across the low drone.

(bell, bell, bell, bell, bell, bell) There are 6 tones, of an iron cast tone, from the Church’s bells. Everyday, religiously rung, at 6pm.

There’s the Bem-Te-Vi song, of the Bem-Te-Vi birds.
Everyday, religiously sung, at 6pm.

The Bem-Te-Vi bird, like Ogun’s sword, on Orion’s belt, is there everyday. 
Today and since always, reverberating above and across the sky
of Belo Horizonte, southeast Brazil, northeast of London.”

Suspensão e queda (making off), original soundtrack by Vanessa De Michelis

“It´s still raining, and we´ve reached the end of the show. You have been listening to Journal Brasilis, by Laura Mello and Vanessa De Michelis. This was our program for the Berlin School of Sound Radio on Colaboradio 88.4 in Berlin and 90.7 in Potsdam. Thank you for listening and goodbye.”


Jeanette Gusko, in interview for Deutschlandfunk Nova, translated by the authors:

Alexis, Rômulo and Couto, Rosa: Rasgo (Cut), audiovisual, 9:58, produced for the Symposium Listening as a tool to blow out the bubble – Berlin/Brazil – Oct 2020