Voices from the Hill: A Celebration of Nature and Community through Art and Performance

Published on Mar 31, 2024

Synchromy, a prominent organizer in the arts scene, is orchestrating an extraordinary event that blends environmental advocacy, artistic expression, and community engagement in Pasadena and Los Angeles.

“Voices from the Hill,” presented as part of Urban Birds 2024, is a festival designed to raise awareness about Elephant Hill in El Sereno, an unprotected greenspace, and to envision a future where natural habitats and human communities coexist harmoniously.

On May 11, the journey begins with a procession along Elephant Hill, showcasing the interconnectedness of nature and community through music, art, and contemplation. Visitors will traverse wild, distressed, and regenerated areas of the hill, encountering musical performances, visual art installations, and interactive experiences that weave together the narrative of environmental justice and cultural expression.

Synchromy said “Voices from the Hill” is about creating a dialogue between humans and the natural world, highlighting the importance of protecting green spaces and fostering a sense of belonging and connection within communities.

Renowned composer and sound creator Guillermo Brown contributes his talents to the project, crafting music that echoes the rhythms of Elephant Hill and the stories it holds. The libretto, penned by LA Poet Laureate Luis Rodriguez, adds a poetic depth to the performances, capturing the essence of resilience and hope in the face of environmental challenges.

On May 18, the celebration moves to Arlington Gardens in Pasadena, offering a family-friendly environment filled with crafts, performances, and activities for all ages.

Once a desolate lot and former staging ground for the 710 freeway, Pasadena residents worked to transform the site into the community gathering space and host for native flora and fauna that it is today.

Here, visitors can experience variations of the music and artwork showcased on Elephant Hill, engage with local organizations such as the Theodore Payne Foundation and Meztli Projects, and immerse themselves in the vibrant cultural tapestry woven by the participating artists and performers. Families will be encouraged to make their own musical instruments from objects and natural materials found onsite, incorporating seeds and other items gathered from Elephant Hill.

The project is made possible by generous support from The Eric Stokes Fund and from Earth’s Best in Tune, as well as grants from the City of Pasadena Department of Cultural Affairs, the California Arts Council, and the Pasadena Community Foundation.

Tickets to the event are free but reservations are advised.

To register, visit


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