CAS Quarterly

Spring 2019

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42 S P R I N G 2 0 1 9 C A S Q U A R T E R L Y Though the home base for Mozart in the Jungle is New York City, this particular episode was shot on location in Tokyo. This presented quite a few differences for much of the sound team. First of all, Tokyo isn't as noisy as New York City, where wireless lavaliere mics are always required for exteriors. This means the episode was able to make better use of the more natural-sounding boom mic. However, the problem of the "wide and tight" multi-camera shooting style of many US productions was a frequent frustration for Tokyo local production mixer Harada. "I always use the boom mic as much as possible. Sadly, we had three cameras that were always going wide and tight at the same time. So I'm guessing post had to use the lav mics more than 80 percent of the time." The more realistic sound of the boom mic is apparent in the natural-sounding dialogue when it was possible to use, so a lot of credit goes to the boom op. Even when the lav mics were used, the dialogue was nice and crisp. Extra credit goes to the production and post-production mixers, but also to Harada's utility person who wired the actors, and to the post team for smoothing and blending. When asked about challenges in the Tokyo location that were different than the New York home, the unanimous answer surprised me: cicadas. Those big ugly noise-making flying insects that can make recording dialogue impossible in an otherwise serene forest. Being from Tennessee, I know cicadas very well and, evidently, Tokyo has the same curse. ADR mixer Patrick Christensen recalls, "The one difference I did notice from the locations in Japan [compared to New York] were the different types of insect and animal life background noise that had to be contended with, much like shooting in the South here in the US. The co-supervising sound editor and ADR supervisor Peter Carlstedt did an excellent job of keeping what they could and replacing only what was truly necessary." Production mixer Harada adds, "Keeping the original performance was very important to the production, and it was difficult for the New York ADR team to record the cast in Japan." Re-recording mixer Chris Jacobson adds, "So, cicadas and other wildlife sounds were wild-tracked to smooth out changes in the background and mixed in to help the original dialogue tracks." When Foley mixer Gary DeLeone was asked about this particular episode, he recalled the footsteps in Tokyo being more of a challenge. "Footsteps in New York tend to be shoes walking on pavement outside or walking on hard-surface floors inside." As in other episodes of Mozart in the Jungle, the music theme of the show required Foley to the sounds of musical instruments going into and coming out of their CAS Award Winner – Television Half-Hour MEET THE WINNERS Mozart in the Jungle "Domo Arigato" by Glen Trew CAS When the title begins with "Mozart," the show is certain to be based on music. This winning episode from Season 4 of Mozart in the Jungle titled "Domo Arigato," begins not with dialogue, but with music—for a full 90 seconds. And this intro is not a prerecorded montage or lip sync as would be customary, but music that was recorded live, on the set, just as if it were dialogue. Re-recording mixer Andy D'Addario (music and dialogue) recalls, "We actually did very few prerecords in our final [4th] season. The opening sequence of this episode was live." True to how music would have been heard in Mozart's time, the opening music was all acoustic, with the instruments and ambience recorded in their natural glory. In short, it sounded like it looked, which is usually a goal, but difficult to achieve. An excellent beginning for a show built on the love of music. A departure from Mozart's time is that this opening music is of a traditional Japanese ceremony using unfamiliar instruments: ancient double-reeds, flute, large drums, hand claps, and the chant of a Shinto priest. Kudos to production mixer Ryotaro Harada for recording this scene with multiple iso tracks that included the natural color and ambience of the instruments, voice, and space. Also a large kudos to re-recording mixers Andy D'Addario (music and dialogue) and Chris Jacobson (background and FX) for employing those tracks in the final mix in a way that served the story so well. Additonally, a great congrats to the ADR mixer Patrick Christensen and Foley mixer Gary DeLeone who carried out their responsibilities with masterful distinction. These subtle but significant nuisances don't happen automatically; they are the result of experience, talent, effort, and dedication to our craft. Re-recording mixers Andy D'Addario and Chris Jacobson

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