Conducting the Wind

"If You Can Dream It…

Architect Paul Murdoch designed the award-winning Flight 93 National Memorial Plaza, which opened to the public in 2011 on the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. His firm’s blueprint, selected among 1,099 entries from 27 countries, features a solemn design that earned the international WAN Concrete in Architecture Award in 2017 for its simplistic nature that speaks grandiose volumes. The Tower of Voices is the final piece of his overall memorial design, an idea he first conceived a dozen years ago."

Source: https://peoriamagazines.com/as/2018/sep-oc...

INTERVIEW: The Flight 93 National Memorial In Honor Of The Fallen On 9/11

Architect for the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Paul Murdoch, speaks to the monument he designed to honor those who lost their lives on United Airlines Flight 93 on September 11, 2001, describes what ceremonies take place on the anniversary of 9/11, how he came up with the schematics of a memorial this important, describes the Tower of Voices memorial and park, and what it’s like to be with the family members when they enter the grounds.

Source: http://www.ksro.com/2018/09/11/interview-t...

“Tower of Voices” Inspires Healing and Contemplation in Remembrance of 9/11

“This is the culmination of 13 years of work, a critical milestone in the project. It’s the last major memorial feature that we originally envisioned in the larger framework of the memorial expression. The tower is the iconic piece as you enter or exit the park to really set the tone for the overall experience. It’s really a welcoming beacon or sentinel, an important moment in the experience of the park,” says Murdoch, whose work is influenced by his travels through India and Japan.

Source: https://iconiclife.com/tower-of-voices/

New Tower at Flight 93 Memorial Honors 9/11 Heroes

The Tower of Voices is arguably the most dramatic of Murdoch’s interventions, symbolically towering 93 feet like a steeple. Within the confines of the memorial’s precast columns, which are clustered together like a group of reeds, are the aluminum chimes, each between five and 10 feet long. Each chime (the largest weighing up to 150 pounds, according to a press release) is specially tuned to create a unique tone (Arup provided both structural and acoustic expertise). In concert, these instruments create a rich, resonant melody as the wind moves among them. Visitors are able to pass beneath to gaze upward at the chimes, or out to a grove of white pine, serviceberry, hawthorn, and redbuds.

Source: https://www.metropolismag.com/architecture...

DnA Tower of Voices Episode

Murdoch worked with a sound artist who specialized in chimes and a musician and tuning theorist on simulating the haunting, melancholy music that would be created by the movement of wind through 40 aluminum tubes of differing lengths.

“When we talked I said, you know, this is not a composed piece. This is always going to be changing. And initially we talked about there being kind of a harmony of these 40 sounds but also some dissonance because of what happened that day.”

Source: https://www.kcrw.com/news-culture/shows/de...

Flight 93 memorial architect: ‘Still work to do’

“This is still a very young-looking park ... you can see the trees that were planted around the field of honor filling out and really taking shape – giving it the definition that’s so important to the design,” the Los Angeles-based architect said.

And that type of natural growth, over time, is “vital to all of these spaces,” he added, noting many other orchestrated plantings still have years to go before the sites themselves they decorate will be in full bloom.

Source: https://www.tribdem.com/news/flight-memori...

Late Hamilton College professor Samuel Pellman contributed to Tower of Voices 9/11 memorial in Shanksville

The chimes are eight-inch-diameter tubes cut to somewhere between 5 and 10 feet in length. The length determines the chime’s pitch, but each chime sounds with overtones and undertones, Murdoch said. The goal was to create pitches that would sound distinct, despite those tones, and that would ring in harmony, symbolizing the actions of crew and passengers on that fateful day, but also with a degree of dissonance, reflecting the tragedy, he said.

Source: http://www.uticaod.com/news/20180909/late-...

A first look at the powerful final phase of the Flight 93 memorial

The first thing you notice is the wind. It accompanies a quiet chorus of chirping birds, rustling leaves from surrounding trees, and the whoosh of muted traffic on a nearby highway. It makes for a deceptive tranquility, belying the horror of United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed near Shanksville in rural southwestern Pennsylvania field after passengers and crew thwarted hijackers’ attempts to hit the U.S. Capitol on September 11, 2001.

Source: https://www.fastcompany.com/90219816/a-fir...

Pennsylvania's 9/11 memorial is one of the first in the world to use sound as a tribute

Styling a suitable sound for the Flight 93 memorial chimes was a long and arduous process. But Murdoch seems certain it was worth the struggle. While most memorials are unchanged from the day they open up to the public, “through sound and wind activation, it becomes a living memorial, in the sense that it is always changing,” Murdoch says. And while other designs provide one shared experience, the tower will ensure that every visit is unique, even personalized. “There’s an emotional aspect to memorialization where tapping into different sensory experiences can be very valuable,” he says. “It’s offering yet another type of commemoration.”

Source: https://www.popsci.com/sonic-memorial-sept...

President Trump Honors Towering Voices at 9/11 Flight 93 Memorial

The task of memorializing what occurred on September 11, 2001 has taken many years and many forms. If you’ve had the opportunity to visit the 9/11 memorial in New York and or visit the 9/11 Museum there, you get a sense of the magnitude of the loss as well as the creation of a solemn dignified response that remembers the almost 3000 victims who lost their lives that day.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/tomteicholz/2...