The Tuba Thieves

The Tuba Thieves

From 2011 to 2013, tubas were stolen from Los Angeles high schools. This is not a story about thieves or missing tubas. Instead, it asks what it means to listen.


"Ultimately, this film is a meditation on access and loss, and an investigation into what it means to steal, make, lose, own, protest against and legislate sound, and therefore inversely quiet and peace. The history of sound segregations is deeply embedded into the city through the design and mediation of sound. These choices declare an ownership over space and air, how sound travels through these substrates and who is allowed or obligated to hear it."

Alison O'Daniel1  


“The Tuba Thieves is best experienced as a meditation that generously explores symbols, emotions, sounds, and occasional frustrations, acknowledging a spectrum of deafness. Still, experiences transcend as the film recreates historic moments, including John Cage’s 1952 performance of his silent piece 4”33 in Woodstock, NY, allowing the audience’s mind and ears to wander. One audience member gets up, walks away, and heads into the forest, where he experiences his own soundscape alone. [...] Through its experimental structure, The Tuba Thieves defies convention, creating a challenging experience that forces us to listen without an overarching narrative imposing some sense of order or the authority of a documentary filmmaker.”

John Fink2

UPDATED ON 27.03.2024
IMDB: tt7741736