Archive for sound design

Bach + Byrnes: Tati as source

Posted in Duos, Resources, Themes with tags , , on March 10, 2012 by glenncbach

Screenshot of “Mon Oncle,” by Jacques Tati

For the first segment of our March 16 session, I will perform an impromptu, and completely non-professional “Foley” interpretation of the sounds of selected scenes from the films of Jacques Tati.  Watching a silenced clip I will respond by activating various objects, instruments, and noisemakers to generate sounds with only a circumstantial relationship to the original visual impetus. My sonic activity will serve as source for Ted as he improvises to my clunky, and I hope not entirely inept, soundtrack.

I chose Tati not only because of the strong presence and personality of the sound design in his films, but also because through his main character and alter ego Monsieur Hulot, Tati explores issues of modernity, technology and a general sense of being “out of place.” This is embodied in his soundtracks, which seem to be added entirely in post-production to what are effectively silent films. The added value of sound-to-image is not at all transparent, with the jarring and often disembodied sounds contributing to the sense of displacement and absurdity in the narrative.

Since Ted will not be able to see the monitor and the visual source for my sounds, he will be removed from the original impetus and must respond to an already “compromised” soundtrack. These layers of slippage will, I hope, result in a complex and nuanced improvisation.