The Soothing Presence of Strangers is an audio piece that explores loneliness, usefulness, and the place a bus route can have in our lives.
In 2020 The Soothing Presence of Strangers was commissioned by BBC Culture in Quarantine, and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in autumn 2020.
LISTEN TO THE FULL PIECE HERE
Written, recorded and edited by Rhiannon Armstrong.
Sound design by Dinah Mullen.
Music by Dinah Mullen and Rhiannon Armstrong.
Drivers interviewed: Mohammed Shabir and Godfrey Stuart
Executive Producer: Sarah Cuddon
Originally commissioned in 2019 as part of Waltham Forest London Borough of Culture’s Waltham Forest Tours programme, curated by William Galinsky, as a 40 minute audio piece designed to be listened to whilst riding a bus.
It is an account of the important role that strangers can have in our lives.
The piece combines:
- autobiographical storytelling about a childhood friendship with a bus driver
- interviews with drivers of the W12 bus in Walthamstow
- original music created from field recordings
It was recorded on the W12 bus route in London. Listeners are guided through the experience by Emma Hignett, the voice of the London wide iBus announcements.