hsr/ny has been awarded the audio post-production assignment for the new animated TV series Maya & Miguel, from Scholastic Entertainment. The daily strip, comprising 65 half hours of animated programming, began airing October 11th on PBS Kids.
Maya & Miguel chronicles the adventures of 10-year-old Latino twins, Maya and Miguel Santos. Featuring their family, relatives and diverse neighborhood friends, Maya & Miguel will reflect back to viewers the cultural mosaic that our country’s neighborhoods have become.
hsr/ny is mixing the 65 half-hours on an SSL 4000 console. The dialog is being cut and played back in Audiofile, the music and sound effects are being played back in Pro Tool; hsr is finishing to 48K .AIFF files that are redelivered to Scholastic. Maya & Miguel also will be available on PBS Kids with a second audio track in Spanish (SAP).
On the challenges of mixing Maya & Miguel, hsr/ny mixer George Meyer said, “The audio post is relatively straightforward, but the sound effects are the key to this show. For hsr, sound effects and Foley artist Dick Maitland who also created the sound effects for Sesame Street for the last 36 seasons, is the real magician, creating well over 750 sound effects in each 22-minute episode, not counting footsteps and Foleys.”
Foley is the key word. Maitland explains, “ Almost all the effects you need are not to be found in existing sound effects libraries. It is faster, and better, to just perform or Foley the stuff–like footsteps, clothing movement, items dropped on a table, flapping parrots and all the silly stuff that goes on–right to picture. It is a daunting challenge not only because of the amount of work in each show, but also the tightness of the schedules. Of course, there is a body of repeating effects, what we call ‘signature effects’ for the characters and some of the actions, but because the writing is so clever and the episodes so varied and interesting, each presents its own challenge. The sound effects bring out the textured flavor, and provide weight and reality to the characters and the world they inhabit. There is a saying at the Yale Drama School that in theater you have to get people, and especially kids, to willingly suspend their disbelief. The same holds true for a cartoon show. We provide effects and weight that let the viewer get into the character’s world and perceive it as a real thing, even if it is a cartoon.”
Another part of the challenge, according to Maitland, is to “make the effects work with the music and the dialogue. Because Maya & Miguel is an educational show we have to be careful, as we navigate around and have fun with the effects, that we not take away from the actual body of the show, which is the support of English language learners.”
For more information, please go to www.hsrny.com.