We speak to various audiophiles – from musicians to wildlife recordists to sound engineers, who are at the top of their game – about the expansive nature of sound and its ability to recall memories, evoke emotions and blow our minds. Whether it’s an epiphany at a concert, a sound that brings back your childhood or a moment of clarity from a brilliant pair of speakers, we learn what good audio means to our guests and how it has shaped their lives and careers.
Composer Emile Mosseri is a rising star in Hollywood. In the past few years he’s scored three major films: Joe Talbot’s drama ‘The Last Black Man in San Francisco’, Miranda July’s quirky heist movie, ‘Kajillionaire’, and most recently Lee Isaac Chung’s Golden Globe-winning ‘Minari’. Plus, on the small screen, he created the tense sound-world for the second season of Amazon’s ‘Homecoming’. In this episode he discusses the scores and sounds that he grew up with and how they filter into his music; the ways in which he has worked with different directors to bring their vision to life in sound; and how he keeps a thread running through his work.
As she releases her debut album, ‘Collapsed in Sunbeams’ the London-based singer, songwriter and poet Arlo Parks reflects on how she defines her sound. She tells us about the music and poetry she was brought up on, why certain instruments speak to her and the effect that the spoken word has on her music.
Since graduating from Northwestern University in 2011, award-winning American conductor Roderick Cox has become a celebrated name in classical music. He served as associate conductor of the Minnesota Orchestra for three seasons before relocating to Berlin, where he is now based. He is also a champion of diversity in the industry and set up the Roderick Cox Music Initiative to help provide scholarships for young musicians of colour from underrepresented backgrounds. In this episode, Cox tells us what it is like to take to the podium and lead an orchestra: from thinking about the acoustics of a concert hall to the addictive feeling you get when you’re hit by the sound of a large ensemble. Cox discusses the works that drew him to conducting; why he needs more life experience before he tackles certain composers; and the power that music has to teach us about other cultures.
Ben and Max Ringham
Brothers Ben and Max Ringham are known for their immersive, 3D sound design for theatre shows such as ‘Blindness’ at the Donmar Warehouse last year, and ‘Anna’ at the National Theatre. They tell us about the power of binaural sound, how it can transport an audience through different scenes, and how they use everyday objects to build up sonic atmospheres.
Composer Grant Kirkhope has written the soundtracks for some very successful video games, including ‘GoldenEye 007’, ‘Civilization’, and ‘Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle’. He tells us about his career highlights and the importance of music to the game-playing experience: from transporting people to new worlds to knowing that you are responsible for writing music that will be part of a fan’s childhood.
Music ‘Oven-Fresh Day’ and ‘Slow-Baked’ are copyright Rare Ltd
Violinist Midori Komachi has been performing as a professional soloist since the age of 12. She specialises in British and Japanese classical music, which she says are intrinsically linked; she is particularly interested in the music of Frederick Delius, about whom she has translated books into Japanese. Komachi tells us about the unique way she found herself drawn to the violin, the physical connection she has with her instrument and the depth and complexity of sound in one note, as well as how her relationship with Delius began. Komachi has lived all around the world and describes how a sense of place influences her music, particularly her own compositions about cities, nature and architecture.