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COMMUNICATING WITH WHALES

Ngày đăng: 16:46 10-12-2019

 

TRANSCRIPT

Voice 1

Welcome to Spotlight program. I’m Liz Waid.

Voice 2

And I’m Nick Page. Spotlight uses a special English method of broadcasting.  It is easier for people to understand, no matter where in the world they live.

Voice 1

Today’s Spotlight is on talking to . . . animals!

Some people may think this is a strange idea.  Speaking to animals almost seems a little silly or foolish.  And it does not seem possible!  But if you think talking to animals is interesting, you should meet a man from the United States named Gary Buttery.

Voice 2

Buttery is a teacher and musical performer. He plays the tuba. This large instrument plays very low notes. Buttery has played the tuba for many years. He has performed all over the world from Italy to Canada to Russia. He has even performed for several Presidents of the United States.

Voice 1

Buttery enjoys making beautiful music with his tuba. He is an expert in playing, writing, and teaching music, and directing music groups. But he also enjoys listening to beautiful music. This is what interested Buttery in humpback whales. When Buttery was a young man he heard about Humpback whales. They sing beautiful songs under the water.

Voice 2

Humpback whales live deep under the ocean water in all parts of the world. These black, grey, and blue animals can weigh more than 36,000 kilograms.  And humpback whales can be 12 to 16 meters long.

Voice 1

But humpback whales are the most famous for their singing. Male humpback whales can sing long and complex songs. These songs can even last from ten to 20 minutes. Many people consider the songs of the humpback whale to be some of the most beautiful in the world. Humpback whale songs change from year to year. And they also change from place to place. Whales living in a group often sing the same song. Here is the song of one humpback whale.

Voice 2

No one knows exactly why humpback whales sing. Some experts believe whales sing to find a mate. Or, a singing whale may just be trying to find another whale. Experts continue to study humpback whale songs. They hope that studying these songs can help people understand how whales communicate.

Voice 1

Gary Buttery heard about the experts who study these humpback whale songs. And he listened to some of the whale songs they had recorded. The songs were extremely interesting to him. He decided that he wanted to do something very unusual - he wanted to write music with these whales. How did Buttery write music for a whale? With his tuba!

Voice 2

Buttery wrote this piece of music called “Conversations with Grace.” He used a recording of a humpback whale named Grace. He listened to Grace singing a song. Then he wrote music for his tuba to go with the song. When he played the tuba part, it sounded like he was talking to Grace. Here is a part of that piece of music.

Voice 1

This is more than just a piece of music. It is like a man and an animal are talking. It is a special effort to create something beautiful. Gary and Grace cannot understand each other. But this effort of communication is beautiful to many people.

Voice 2

Buttery performed this song for many people all across the United States. A newspaper even wrote a story about it. Doctor Peter Beamish saw this newspaper story. Doctor Beamish worked with whales in Newfoundland in Canada. He wanted to know how real whales would react to Buttery’s tuba playing. Would Buttery be able to communicate with them?  Would the whales become angry or calm? Would the whales listen to him? Or would they swim away?

Voice 1

Doctor Beamish invited Buttery to Trinity Bay in Newfoundland. This was a place where whales could come to get food. There, Buttery played his tuba for the whales as he floated on the ocean on a small flat boat. As Buttery played his tuba, Doctor Beamish watched the whales. He wanted to see if their behaviour changed. He wanted to see if they showed anger or aggression or if they were interested in Buttery’s music. He watched to see if the whales did anything unusual.

Voice 2

The experience of playing for the whales was very special for Buttery. He described the experience to the online magazine Tubanews.com:

Voice 3

“A few times, single humpback whales would swim with me only a few feet from my boat - for over an hour. Being in the company of such a large creature was exciting. The experience made me want to play more creative songs on my tuba - even ones I just made up. It made me want to do my own whale sounds using my tuba. That last idea did not prove to be a good idea with one whale. It left. As it was leaving it hit the water very hard with its tail. It seemed insulted. But he did return again, when I began playing another song.”

Voice 1

Buttery was also able to play music for whales to help them. Whales can get caught in underwater nets, or traps. A few times, Doctor Beamish asked Buttery to play his tuba for these caught whales. The whales were very frightened. This made it difficult for Doctor Beamish to cut the nets away from them. But when Buttery played his tuba, the whales became calmer. Then the scientists could cut the nets away from the whales more easily.

Voice 2

The experience was good for both Buttery, and the whales. Buttery enjoyed being near the whales. And it helped him to experiment with his tuba playing. The whales also seemed to enjoy Buttery’s music. They swam next to him. And his music made them calmer.

Voice 1

It is also a special experience when people see Buttery playing his tuba for whales. Music like the piece “Conversations with Grace” is beautiful. People all over the world can enjoy it.

Voice 2

Today, Buttery still plays his tuba in concerts around the world. And experts are still trying to discover the secrets of humpback whalesong. Will they ever know why these whales sing these beautiful songs?

Amslink luôn sẵn sàng lắng nghe và hỗ trợ giải đáp những thắc mắc về lộ trình học tập phù hợp cho từng học sinh. Phụ huynh quan tâm và muốn tư vấn về lộ trình phù hợp cho con vui lòng đăng ký tại http://bit.ly/Tuvan_ams để được hỗ trợ.


Trân trọng,

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