Sonic Architecture for Iguatemi

Speakers: Paulo Dytz, Bruno Alcalde
Client: Iguatemi Shopping Mall
Agency: B Sound Thinking – Brazil

Abstract (Description of the project by B Sound Thinking)

In 2012, Iguatemi –one of the most important malls from southern Brazil–asked us to provide music for its main entrances. However, before adding more sound, we needed to understand the mall’s existing soundscape. We used our exclusive sound thinking methodology to offer a more thorough delivery that is sonic as well as musical. During the first stage, we not only listened to the sonic environment, but also tried to understand how it could connect through sound in a deeper way with its public.

Besides interviews with managers and collaborators, we analyzed vast research material and brand guidelines, and checked every relevant sound present in that context in varying times and days. We measured noise levels that ranged from 71dB to 82.7 dB. A phonoaudiologist carried an auditoryperceptual analysis of the collaborators. The goal was to identify any congruence in how they communicate vocally with the customers. We noted lack of training and the absence of a vocal pattern in some essential areas. We developed a sonic architecture bolstered by the brand’s pillars, and, during the implementation stage, we created Sound Identity Manuals: an unseen tool in Brazilian malls.

We also trained a team of collaborators to be the “noise patrol”. We produced new messages for the entrance gates that were shorter and more rhythmic, improving their sound quality. Additionally, we defined a vocal pattern for the collaborators, as well as a project for sound emission. Only after these stages, we created the musical moods for each time, public profile, and environment in the mall. Combining software developed exclusively for Iguatemi and microphones installed in the mall, we built a system capable of adding or muting tracks, depending on the noise level detected. More than just adding sound, we took care of every detail in order to compose Iguatemi’s soundscape.

Video case containing the process behind the Sonic Architecture for Iguatemi

Time period of realization

November 2012 – July 2013