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Humanities LibreTexts

4.3: Sound Design

  • Page ID
    74072
  • The music you choose for your production gets your audience in the mood of the play from the time they enter, to the time the production begins. When choosing music for your pre show you want to make sure that the music creates an atmosphere that compliments the theme, style, and pace of your production.

    One huge storytelling aid is the music you choose to play during scene transitions. The song you select needs to fit the overall style you have chosen for the production. In addition, the song needs to capture the feeling and mood of the previous scene and then naturally transition in tempo to the feeling and mood of the next scene. Think of the scene transition music as a way of harnessing the audiences collective attention and energy and seamlessly guiding it into the next scene.

    Consequently your final song of the evening, that ends the show and leads you into curtain call, should highlight the final moment of the play and then transition to something inspiring and uplifting. You want your final moments of the show to resonate with your audience and be powerful yet guide them to a positive curtain call full of energy.

    How to prepare for your meeting

    • Read the play and write down the list of sound effects. Then write down all of the scene transitions and look at how each scene emotional ends and begins. Write them down.
    • Look at the styles and inspiration choices you have collected for your other meetings. What music style lends itself to be cohesive with these style choices? You want to make sure that all of your music is from the same style or your production will appear scattered and unfocused. You also do not want to be so consumed with finding music that reflects your theme that you sacrifice the mood and overall cohesion of the sound design for lyrical content. Find ideas and trust your sound designer.
    • Find examples of music you really like and make sure to bring it to the meeting.
    • Remember that your sound designer experiences storytelling through mood, beat, tempo, rhythm, and pace. The more examples you are able to give, the more focused the design.
    • Let them know their budget
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