Genelec helps Star Wars legend deliver SoundDesign MasterClass

We were delighted that Genelec 8351As and a 7370A subwoofer were chosen to form the 5.1 surround sound system for the recent 7th International Hamburg Summer School for FilmMusic, GameMusic and SoundDesign, organised by Media Sound Hamburg and brilliantly supported by our German distribution partners Audio Export.

As a sponsor of the Summer School, we were also pleased to provide a scholarship for young Dutch sound designer Janneke van Nijnanten to participate in the ten-day Summer School festival, which enables visitors to attend workshops, masterclasses and forums, work on real projects, and find inspiration and new artistic ideas for their work.

This year, visitors got the chance to work together with acclaimed professionals such as Joe Kraemer (Mission Impossible - Rogue Nation, MasterClass FilmMusic), Youki Yamamoto (Harry Potter, Meryem, MasterClass Orchestration) and Merlin György (MasterClass GameMusic). Additionally, our own senior technologist Thomas Lund delivered his much-admired Give Peaks A Chance talk on loudness and level standardisation.

But the undoubted highlight of the 2017 Summer School was Ben Burtt’s ‘Metropolis’ MasterClass in SoundDesign. A four-time Academy Award winner, Ben is most famous for developing the legendary sound effects for the Star Wars films: including the sounds of the Lightsaber and R2-D2, and the heavy breathing of Darth Vader. Throughout his work - which also includes the Indiana Jones film series, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, E.T., WALL-E and Star Trek - all of Ben’s movies showcase his totally individual technique of telling stories using sound.

The MasterClass task was a fascinating but challenging one – Ben invited the students to contribute sound and/or music to a clip from Fritz Lang’s classic 1927 silent movie Metropolis, with the instruction that students should “feel free to express themselves from the heart. Whatever you do, the objective is to tell a story with sound that has a beginning, middle and end. I imagine that the sounds, if heard by themselves, would tell a story or at least have a dramatic profile as well.”

Genelec is particularly proud that our SAM products were chosen to enable Ben to deliver his MasterClass, helping to shine an audio spotlight on the crucial and highly-skilled work of the Sound Designer.

Read scholarship winner Janneke van Nijnanten’s account of the Summer School

More Summer School information    

Main photo by: DS Pictury