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Ethometric Museum [2011]

Utterly wonderful
Sumit Paul-Choudhury, editor New Scientist magazine

Enter the Ethometric Museum and be transported into a parallel universe of cosmic tones and esoteric technology, an Aladdin’s cave of exquisitely hand- crafted contraptions.

Inside you will bathe in the resonant sound waves generated by the spinning machines and dancing automata and marvel as Professor Lee flicks the knobs and tunes the dials to play an innovative musical soundscape that envelops you like a ‘three dimensional piece by Steve Reich’.

According to the introduction given to you by the earnest and elegantly dressed curator, Dr. Kounadea, each machine emits specific harmonic frequencies and through their precise manipulation Ethometrics ‘expert’ Professor Lee will realign your ‘super-electrical field’.

Appearing to be artefacts from a hitherto unknown branch of science, these extraordinary Ethometric Instruments are curious, fascinating and beguiling relics from a bygone age. Fascinating, compelling and hauntingly beautiful, Ethometric Museum is an immersive theatrical journey into a hypnotic and mesmerising world of whirling devices, pulsing drones and proper science.

Selected Press

A kind of musical H.G.Wells - Ivan Hewitt BBC Radio 3

Witty, strange and beautiful…For total strangeness see Ray Lee’s Ethometric Museum. - Lyn Gardner, Guardian

Gentle, whimsical and resonant with beauty - Glasgow Herald ****

If you’re after something different, Ethometric Museum will take your breath away - Three Weeks****

A strange, alien, ever changing sound world, at once beguiling and disconcerting - What’s on Stage ****



  • Museum of the History of Science, Oxford

  • BEAM sound art festival, Brunel University, London

  • Cellar of Mason’s Lodge, Hill Street Theatre, Edinburgh

  • The Old Library, South Hill Park Arts Centre, Bracknell


  • Council Chamber, Battersea Arts Centre, London

  • Gravity Fields Festival Grantham

  • Natural Science Society, Bournemouth Arts Festival

  • Alms House, Corsham Festival

  • Tesla Museum, Belgrade, Serbia, supported by the British Council


  • Ashmolean Museum Oxford


  • Science Museum, London


  • Charlbury The Shed
  • The Thin Veil, Kinetica 10 year Anniversary Show, Tanner St, London (automatic version)


  • Tanner Street, London
  • Junction, Goole

Supported by:

Arts Council England, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford Contemporary Music


Hear and Now, BBC Radio 3, December 2011.


BASCA British Composer of the Year for Sonic Art 2012


Performers: ‘The Curator’; Stavroula Kounadea (Graham Elstone for four performances in Oxford). ‘The Professor’; Ray Lee, Harry Dawes (for certain performances in Oxford and Edinburgh)

The curator’s role was developed in collaboration with Stavroula Kounadea.

Additional technical assistance: Graham Calvert

Produced by Oxford Contemporary Music