History

1959-64

July 30, 1960

1959-64

Beginning experiments with Anna Halprin’s modern dance troupe, followed by Audium performances at SF State & SF Museum of Art. Performances of Audium I, II, & III. 

Audium Opens in SF’s Richmond District

May 23, 1967

Audium Opens in SF’s Richmond District

First performance at Audium’s first permanent space, following 1.5 years of preparations, construction & composition. Audium IV premieres.

Audium V Premiere

September 5, 1969

Audium V Premiere

Paul Hertlendy, music critic for the Oakland Tribune, writes “Two local master craftsmen in music and acoustics have perfected a new technique… It could easily develop into a major art form of the coming decades.”

New Theater Opens

October 31, 1975

New Theater Opens

After 5 years’ construction and a series of grants from the NEA, Audium opens the doors to its permanent home at 1616 Bush Street. Audium VI premieres with the opening.

LA Times Review

October 12, 1976

LA Times Review

Review in LA Times, by critic David Johnston: “75 minutes of sensational aural stimulation…. Its sounds, in a blend that is both symphony and cacophony, seem to go beyond the eardrum to penetrate the soul.”

Audium VII Premiere

November 23, 1979

Audium VII Premiere

The Asahi Shinbun’s Iwao Sakane writes “Audium made me recall several experimental sound halls [of] the International Exposition held in Osaka in 1970. The experiment is being continued in America. And there is a man like Shaff who is engaged in bringing back music into the everyday life of mankind.”

Audium VIII Premiere

January 20, 1984

Audium VIII Premiere

Additional “zip” speakers added underneath seats and in center. Added audio channels for lobby sound. Wired Magazine’s Colin Berry writes: “Shaff’s contribution lies in his realization that, if one is truly serious about utilizing space in music, one must configure the performance environment in ways that are inconceivable in a typical concert hall.”

1988 – 2008

January 1, 1988

1988 – 2008

Expansion of university workshop program; class visits from schools such as  Stanford, Oxford, University of Aizu, Japan, and University of Montreal.  Increase in consultation in design, technology and the arts;  visits from Merce Cunningham dance company, SFMOMA, Meyer Sound Laboratories, Lucasfilm, Disney’s Imagineering group, Monterey Bay Aquarium, IMAX, Apple, IDEO, Sony, Royal Shakespeare Company, and The Grateful Dead. 

Audium IX Premiere

October 1, 2008

Audium IX Premiere

New digital playback system, additional audio channels and corner speakers installed.

Audium X Premiere

June 15, 2018

Audium X Premiere

Audium 10 premieres, first collaboration between Stan Shaff and son David Shaff. 

Sound & Space Workshop Series

February 18, 2019

Sound & Space Workshop Series

2019-2020, new bimonthly series created for Bay Area composers and artists. Curriculum focused on Audium’s philosophy of design for immersive audio environments.

Audium 11 premiere

November 22, 2019

Audium 11 premiere

Composition by Stan and David Shaff. Visual art installation in lobby by Ryan Elisabeth Reid. Enhanced digital playback for full building, new digital live controls, two additional channels of audio. Hoodline’s Cedric Westphal writes “It’s the labor of love of a father-son team…. every element of Audium is crafted to fully immerse the audience in sound, from the entrance lobby to the bathrooms to the lighting.”