How does the body sound?


How does the body sound?


Sounding Motion project is an interdisciplinary investigation which tunes the corporeal into a form in which dance, space, and music are informing and understanding each other.

The Sounding Motion method uses an interactive digital interface for musical expression. It consists of pressure sensors attached to the dancer’s body from which triggers and amplitude parameters are extracted to control playback of predetermined sounds. This allows the dancer to create her immediate and improvised soundscape out of her movements. The instrumental extension of the body highlights body awareness and self-reflection in improvisation performance. To the audience the method offers an additional auditive channel to hear the movement, experience kinetic empathy and, through this, gain a new level of interpretation for contemporary dance.

In addition to performances, the Sounding Motion method is applied in teaching, research and outreach contexts.


There are currently three performance projects under the SoMo practice. Read more about:


We offer workshops, outreach work and performance lectures for professionals in dance and technology related practises. We also work with groups with different ages and groups with special needs that may benefit for working creatively with different perception systems.

Read more about:


In our research artists from disciplines of dance, music and technology are working together exploring creative live interaction between movement and sound. We develop ways of making performances, as well as the Sounding Motion method itself and in different adaptations and collaborations in pedagogical, academic and artistic contexts. One key question is; How does the simultaneous composition of music and movement develop multimodal awareness?

Who We Are

Hanna Pajala-Assefa is a contemporary dance artist, who works in various dance disciplines as a choreographer, dancer, researcher and pedagog. In 2013 was awarded with the ”Finnish Dance Achievement”-Award, for her ground breaking work in founding and developing Loikka – dance film festival. Her latest stage work Poimintoja was premiered in September 2015. Her previous piece ”History of a Love”, was seen at Zodiak –  Center for New Dance 2013 and toured 2014. She is currently carrying out artistic research involving the interdisciplinary method Sounding Motion.

Karolina Ginman (Dance BA) is a dancer, pedagog and choreographer. She played a major part in developing the Sounding motion – method and acted as an assistant to choreographer in creating the piece Excerpts. She is part of the ongoing artistic research and development of the method in current work.

Jasmiina Sipilä works as a performer, a choreographer and a teacher in the field of dance, theatre and collaborative art projects. Her own artistic ambition is in improvisation practice as a performance form and has been performed in UK and Finland, at Music House of Helsinki amongst others. She has thought for example at the University of Arts Helsinki in interdisciplinary improvisation workshops, Tallinn University dance and choreography departments, Daksha Sheth Dance Company in India and international residency programme at Playpractice Studio in India. She was the artistic planner and mentor for a year-long programme for Jersey Arts Trust, UK, to offer artists a platform to collaborate across art disciplines. Jasmiina is part of the Sounding Motion research, development and performances.

Anni Rissanen on taiteen vapaalla kentällä toimiva tanssija (TaM), pedagogi (AMK) ja koreografi. Monimuotoisessa tanssitaiteellisessa työssään hän pyrkii mahdollistamaan tilanteita, jotka vahvistavat ruumillista ajattelua ja läsnäoloa tässä ja nyt. Kollektiivinen työtapa on hänelle tutttua mm. Vivarium Kollektiivista ja Puplic Address ryhmistä. Hän on SoLi hankkeessa mukana tanssijana ja toivoo voivansa hyödyntää metodia jatkossa myös opetustyössään.

Aki Päivärinne (MA in sound design, TeM) is a sound designer and musician, specialised in sound design, programming and coding. He is responsible for coding and programming the sound data used in live performance as well as creating and producing sonic material. Päivärinne and Assefa are together running the live sound and amplifying programs necessary in the performance.

Abdissa Assefa is a musician and sound engineer, who produced and created the sound and music files together with Päivärinne used in Excerpts. In the performance he plays a major role controlling and effecting the live sound on performance and in future research.

Liisa Pesonen (MA Arts)  is costume designer specialised in technological garments and was responsible for developing wearable electronics for Excerpts. She continues developing the sensor technology applications for the artistic work and research and produces all new wearable  electronics and application necessary for future work relating Sounding Motion –method.

Till Bovermann studied and worked at Bielefeld University where he received a PhD for his work on Tangible Auditory Interfaces. Subsequently, he worked as a post-doctoral researcher on tangible and auditory interaction at the Media Lab of Aalto University, Finland. Since 2014, Till is the principal investigator/UdK Berlin of the 3DMIN project on Design, Development and Dissemination of New Musical Instruments, a collaboration between UdK Berlin and TU Berlin. Among others, Till has been teaching experimental instrument design and sound technology at various international institutions, among others the IMM in Düsseldorf, Aalto University and at the institute for time-based media of UdK Berlin. In his artistic works, he addresses the relationship between seemingly contradictory elements, e.g. the digital and physical realm. Till also develops software in and for SuperCollider and runs TAI-stuido.

Iida-Vilhelmiina Laine is a classical cellist with a masters degree from the University of Arts Sibelius Academy. She has studied under Arto Noras and Timo Hanhinen and gathered additional knowledge with Sharon Ensemble and of alternative cello treatment. She was a finalist in Turku Cello Contest and worked as a orchestra and chamber musician, as well as a soloist in Finland and internationally. Her musical virtuosity allows her to use her skills across various music genres. Her interests in new cello expression and improvisation has taken her to post graduate studies where she explores the possibilities and implications in acoustic and electronically altered expression of the cello instrument.


SoMo method – practice based research

We are using sensor technology to create a soundscape from the movements of a dancer. SoMo method allows the dancer to create her immediate and improvised soundscape out of her movements. It empowers the dancer to define not only how she moves but also how she sounds and communicates sonically while moving. The practice intensifies our hearing and tactile-kinaesthetic sensations and our corpo-musical imagination. With this help, the SoMo -method allows to highlight body awareness and self-reflection in improvisation practice and performance.


Poimintoja (original title) Excerpts is a contemporary dance and sound-art performance where an instrument is created out of the bodies of two dancers and the space they are moving in. This performance was created by a group of artists working interdisciplinary researching new technology, music and dance. Investigating sensor technology and
developing it further they created a Sounding Motion method and practice. 


Active Resonance is a kinetic-sound installation performance by Sounding Motion collective. The space is transformed into a resonating entity by improvising dancers who control sound producing objects through sensor-technology. Performance duration 30min.

Concept: SoMo Collective
Sound and interactive elements: Eero Nieminen, technical advisory artist Aki Päivärinne
Resonating bodies: Karolina Ginman, Jasmiina Sipilä, Hanna Pajala-Assefa, Costumes: Liisa Pesonen

Aalto / Medilab SoMo workshop demo

Workshop in Aalto MediaLab Tangible Auditory Interfaces using Sonic Motion -method.
A 5 day workshop for sound and media students in Aalto university May 2016.
Demo consists of fully improvised composition of movement and sound, demonstrating the movement sonification methods developed during the workshop.

DIY: How to make a wire for sensor


Phone: Hanna Pajala: +358405157716
Location: Helsinki

Feel free to leave a message to us. We`ll get back to you soon!