A large part of a film's meaning is carried in its soundtrack. Most directors know this but few of them know how that soundtrack is created - unless they are graduates of the MA Filmmaking programme at the London Film School, where every student, whatever their preferred field, is taught the theory and practice of recording and manipulating sound.
It starts with the study of how we hear sound, and indeed what sound is. Next comes practical experience with digital recorders, together with the electrical theory needed to understand how they work. Then comes shooting sound in synchronisation with picture and the principles behind a full range of modern microphones which are then used on location and in the studio. From the second term onwards, all films have stereo soundtracks. In the Fifth Term tracks are prepared on Protools 24 work stations so they can be mixed in Dolby 5.1
At last, it might be thought, after all that acquiring of technical knowledge ‘Sound Design’ begins. Well, without technical knowledge there is nothing to design with. But imagination – hard to teach conventionally but essential to filmmaking – is always required of a student, right from the moment when they start to think how their pictures and sounds might work together to stir an audience. That audience most likely will never understand how they have been affected, but a filmmaker graduating from the school will know, since they have learnt how to work with sound and make it work for them.
There are Protools 24HD work stations for the preparation of sound tracks for Dolby digital mixes. Commentary and foley recording area.