Title: Decoding Dreams

Duration: 14”59

Delivery Date/Time: 8th December 2020 (1pm)

Producer: Paola Massimo

Web Link: https://soundcloud.com/user-298830868/decoding-dreams-paola-massimo

Backup Player:


Synopsis: After the stress of 2020, a large number of people have reported a rise in their sleeping habits being affected. In particular, the number of vivid, stress-inducing dreams that people have experienced. But how can people combat their anxiety related dreams in order to get a better night’s sleep?

This dramatised-documentary recreates common stress dreams that people have experienced, along with an explanation for what they mean and how you can use them to guide you from energy insights expert Alison Ward. Also featured in the documentary are interviews from researcher Dr Laura Boubert, and composer Katie Joyce, who can hear music in her dreams and uses them to fuel her work.



At the start of the programme, a montage can be heard from all three different voices that will be speaking in the piece, they will be discussing the brain and dreaming to set the ‘story’. The music that can be heard at the beginning will be composed by the producer, Paola Massimo. Multiple sound effects will also be able to be heard overlapping the music that is calming, such as windchimes and the sounds of waves on the beach. This is so that the listener will be able to feel more emersed and feel calm before they go embark on the journey of the different dreams.

After the montage, the interviewees will share their thoughts about dreams in more detail to give the listener a bigger picture, and they will also share some of their own experiences that they have had. The listener will be able to hear an underlying dramatic theme throughout this section, along with sound effects that compliment what is being discussed. This is so that the listener will continue to feel emersed in the atmosphere before the first dream will begin. In addition to this, a small snippet of Katie Joyce’s piece titled ‘Espionage’ can be heard while she is talking, in order to get an impression for her work.

After this, the first dream about being shouted at by a teacher in front of everyone can be heard. The listener will be able to hear lots of school-based sound effects to make them feel as though they are in the situation, along with an original composition by producer Paola Massimo. In addition to this, voice actor Sally Day can be heard playing the role of the teacher. A narration by Paola Massimo will also be heard, acting as a guide to the listener throughout the dream. After the dream can be heard, energy insights expert Alison Ward will analyse the dream and give advice on the next steps you can take. She will then have a discussion with Dr Laura Boubert about school dreams in more detail.

The second dream that can be heard is about flying through the air and dramatically falling. The listener can hear lots of sound effects that replicate the feeling of being free and flying in the sky until darker and tense sound effects can be heard to give off the feeling of falling. There will also be an original composition by producer Paola Massimo, where the piece is designed to replicate the wings flying in the sky lightly, before being heavier and scarier as the listener falls out of the sky. In addition, Paola Massimo will also be narrating the piece so that the listener can follow along with the story. After this, there will be a dream analysis by Alison Ward, and because part of the dream is related to creating new projects and ideas, the listener will then be able to hear Katie Joyce discussing her music dreams and the piece she created called ‘6am Idea’ that was directly inspired from a dream. Dr Laura Boubert will be explaining the science behind music dreams in more detail.

Dr Laura Boubert will then discuss one of the ways that you can overcome anxiety and stress dreams, this is accompanied by an original composition by producer Paola Massimo, titled ‘Rhythm of the Newtons Cradle’ as it matches the rhythm and sound effects of a newtons cradle throughout, helping the listener to feel more emersed as Laura discusses the therapy in which tapping repeatedly to a rhythm throughout is used in order to help get over these dreams. After this, the final dream can be heard is in a happier tone, due to the fact that Laura will have discussed how to get over anxiety inducing dreams in the clip prior. An original composition can be heard by producer Paola Massimo, which has a happier feel to it, while she and voice actor Lauren Watson have a discussion on the phone about how they are going to go on holiday to Bora Bora after winning the lottery in the dream.

After the final dream analysis from Alison Ward, the beginning music from the opening montage will be heard, along with the sound effects that were used in order to help the listener get back to a calm state after experiencing the three dreams. You will then be able to hear the final thoughts from the 3 speakers, as they make closing statements about the brain and dreaming.



After speaking to Alison Ward who runs her own business as an energy insights reader and expert, she was happy to both be interviewed for my project, and to also commission the audio for her business, as it highlights one of the areas that clients come to see her: analysing dreams. Therefore, as well as all of the other background information that I used from other interviewees, I made sure to really focus in on the dreams and dream analysis section for the commissioner.

The next morning after the interview and the discussion with Alison about what the audio project will be, she sent me this email to confirm that she would like to use the audio for her business:




Cue: Has the stress of the Coronavirus and the lockdowns been affecting your sleeping and dreaming habits? A study by the Museum of London has started to collect people’s vivid dreams that they have reported they are experiencing due to the pandemic. But how can we combat these anxiety related dreams as we learn to adapt to ‘the new normal’? This dramatized-documentary produced by Paola Massimo sets out to discover just how powerful our dreams can be, and how you can use them for guidance in your day to day life.

For the best listening experience, please use headphones and close your eyes.


In: Piano music until first line at 0”09: “So, the brain is always busy…”

Out: “… I think dreams are valuable and valid.”

Dur: 14”59


Back Anno: Decoding Dreams was produced by Paola Massimo. Featuring interviews from Alison Ward, Dr Laura Boubert and Katie Joyce.




Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash



 The promotional tweet for the programme can be found below.



  1. Title: “Mind-map”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 00”00 – 00”55 & 14”04 – 14”59

  1. Title: “Espionage”

Composer: Katie Joyce

Time Stamp: 02”22 – 02”40

  1. Title: “Dream Opening Interlude”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 02”40 – 02”49; 05”51 – 05”58 & 12”50 – 12”57

  1. Title: “Anxious in School”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 02”49 – 03”56 & 05”09 – 05”51

  1. Title: “Dream Closing Interlude”

Time Stamp: 04”15 – 04”23; 07”53 – 08”00 & 13”56 – 14”03

  1. Title: “Flying and Falling”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 06”08 – 07”47

  1. Title: “6am Idea”

Composer: Katie Joyce

Time Stamp: 08”36 – 10”35

  1. Title: “Rhythm of the Newtons Cradle”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 11”42 – 12”49

  1. Title: “Happier Thoughts”

Composer: Paola Massimo

Time Stamp: 13”24 – 13”55



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