Viennese Journey into Direct Sound

A little story about DIRECT SOUND

(nota bene… DIRECT SOUND = SOUND RECORDED ON SET)

Back to the future…

In 2027, (or was it 1984?) the international movie industry was producing its daily quota of films, an endless stream of synthesized spectacle. AI playwrights were creating narratives performed with eerie realism, and the once dynamic and creative crafts of cinema were a memory. Sound itself became a clinical and sanitized vibration.

Yet a rebellion was brewing in the shadows – a return to the forgotten art of Direct Sound. The revolution began in whispers and small touches – the essence of films carried by actors whose voices resonated with the raw energy of the moment were rediscovered. People then forgot the sterility of AI-generated soundtracks, the strange perfection devoid of humanity. They craved the imperfections, the wrinkled clothes, the coughs and hesitations that whispered, “It’s real.”

But the path was strewn with pitfalls. Legacy audio equipment was a relic in the digital landscape. A Cantar X3 or a Nagra were simply no longer usable. Boom operators, excessively protein-packed, iron-rigid characters who once danced with microphones, were a dying breed. Their profession, the art of capturing the subtle variations of voices in space, was considered obsolete. AI could replace voices with archived recordings, synthesizing emotions with frightening ease and (seeming) precision.

Who needed a human in the loop? There were some serious challenges there. The raw, unfiltered nature of Direct Sound became uncomfortable, confusing and even disturbing.

And the future is now…

Nowadays, one could easily be surprised by how far AI already went. It has strongly invaded the sound production space, from recording to mixing… more than most of us know!

Meanwhile, on February 15, the company AATON, which produced the famous Cantar X3 (Stradivarius-like recorder), closed its business. A key moment in the ongoing restructuration of the industry, and a strong symbol of the end of an era. In this process, both the global audio-visual landscape and the technical craftsmanship have been turned upside down. “Make it lean, lose the breath and the spirit, nobody cares for… Anymore”.

Welcome to the new order.

During the “Viennese journey into direct sound”, we will revisit the fundamental technologies and principles of direct sound recording.

NAGRA(!), AATON, AMBIENT RECORDING, BEBOB, DEITY, VIVIANA,… hands-on Workshops and state of the art masterclasses will set the tone.

High gloss panels will allow us to redefine direct sound driven creativity, on interlaced levels.

This event has been conceived, realized by senior artist William Edouard FRANCK, and co-organized by Karin MACHER, Ewald GRABENBAUER and the crew of the Filmakademie Wien.

  • Austrian FTA sound Mixers will be invited to a carte blanche dedicated to Manuel GRANDPIERRE. They will show us the whole spectrum of direct sound driven sound design.
  • Direct sound Directors  (Tizza COVI, Elisabeth SCHARANG) and eminent international sound mixers; Simone GALAVAZI(NL), Yves-Marie OMNES (F), Viktor KRIVOSUDSKY (SK), will give us the ins and outs of designing direct sound on set in 2024. Opening doors to an untethered sound world.
  • These sound mixers will be joined by a leading ex-developer of the Cantar X3, Pascal GRILLERE. They will draw the line from genesis to iterative takeovers and give us the latest AATON insights. The next uprising might bring us a newly designed stradivaricantar.
  • Last but not least, Patrushkha MIERZWA and Mark ULANO (the most talented “Euro-American sound spirits”) will honour us for the second year in a row with pure joy, fundamentally levelling up an event that was not even planned as such, the Viennese journey into direct sound. Vintage 2024!

This event has been conceived, realized by senior artist William Edouard FRANCK, and co-organized by Karin MACHER, Ewald GRABENBAUER and the crew of the Filmakademie Wien.

(*) movies recorded by these sound mixers will be screened in the Stadtkino Wien, the Admiral Kino, and the Arthouse cinema.

EMAIL LINK: wtwf@mageos.com

„DAS PROGRAMM“

Wednesday April 10

18:15-21:30: Manuel GRANDPIERRE “Carte blanche”, ARTHOUSE KINO

Thursday April 11

Friday April 12

  • VERY SPECIAL AMBIENT WORKSHOPS @ STUDIO 1 & 2
    • 10:00-13:00 AMBIENT RECORDING; TIME CODE , ACN NETWORK
    • 14:00-17:00 Script App and one to one classes
    • registration under OTonTage@gmail.com
  • 18-21:30: THE GENESIS OF THE CANTAR X3, ARTHOUSE KINO
    • Pascal GRILLERE and Yves-Marie OMNES

Saturday April 13

Sunday April 14

Monday April 15

  • 14-18:00 Systemic views on direct sound
  • 18-21:30 Screening+Q&A “LA SYNDICALISTE” with Christoph SCHILLING, Arthouse Cinema
    • Moderation Alexander MAHLER

Thursday April 16

  • 9:00-17:00 Direct sound in the fields, a schamanic approach

Wednesday April 17

  • 9:30-18Uhr: BOOMING IN IMPOSSIBLE LIGHT, STUDIO 1
    • with David HASSLINGER and Albert CAR

LINKS to TUTORIALS of our guests: