VH1 needed both intensity and space in the :30 promo for their highly anticipated new program â€œThe T.O. Show.â€? They called on Nutmeg Audio Post (www.nutmegaudiopost.com) for a standout sound design that would show why the multidimensional athlete Terrell OwensÂ (T.O.) was a star worth watching.
Nutmeg Senior Audio Engineer Mike Vitacco collaborated closely with VH1 Director/Writer Tyler Greco, starting with an extremely productive pre-production, to craft â€œT.O.â€? into an arresting promo. Set in a surreally empty football stadium, Owens plays chess with himself, as the camera continually rotates 360 degrees to show the many scenes of celebrity, solitude and psychological intrigue that are his everyday life.
Vitaccoâ€™s sound design draws viewers in deeper by employing subtly unexpected sounds and judicious use of space. â€œThis promo explores the internal struggles and multiple identities we all
deal with,â€? Vitacco explains. â€œI wanted to accentuate the visual openness of the spot. The empty football field with the lights gives the idea that maybe heâ€™s in front of 80,000 fans, or maybe in his own world. â€?
â€œI try to give every project its own fingerprint, by employing original, organic sounds that I create, instead of whooshes from a library. The sound of champagne pouring into a glass is actually a modified tape shuttle effect, flashbulbs popping are robot gulps, and my guitar through a Moogerfooger delay is also there — the result is an alternate reality. But itâ€™s not just what the sound effects are: Itâ€™s also the space that we were able to lend to each of them. Nothing is rushed, and nothing is stepping on something else.â€?
Itâ€™s in the Mix:
VH1â€™s Greco teamed closely with Nutmeg from the beginning, planning the visuals in synch with Vitaccoâ€™s sound design concepts and an artfully minimalist hip hop track from composer Eddie Cooper of Explosion Robinson. Jamie Hubbard of Cause & [Effect] ensured the video editorial kept sound and visuals perfectly sharp. â€œWhen we collaborated on the pre-production, I did a read of the script myself so Tyler would know exactly how much time he needed for each camera movement,â€? says Vitacco, who also oversaw the ISDN record of Owenâ€™s VO, and the subsequent mix. â€œAdvance sound work like that helps him not to rush the visuals, and contributes to a top-notch spot.â€?
â€œ’T.O’ really started with the sound design and music,â€? adds Tyler Greco. â€œOnce we conceptualized this stark, surreal stadium setting, the audio became just as important as the camera work. Mikeâ€™s work really pushed the spot â€“ when itâ€™s over, viewers really have a sense of what the show is about, who T.O. is, who he isnâ€™t, and that they want to know more.â€?
â€œWhenever you work at Nutmeg Audio Post, you know youâ€™re going to get a unique perspective on sound,â€? Greco continues. â€œNothing is cookie-cutter there, because they give you a fresh approach. Thatâ€™s important, because then you get what we accomplished with â€˜T.O.â€™: a one-of-a-kind spot that stands out from the pack.â€?
About Nutmeg Audio Post:
Nutmeg Audio Post is New York Cityâ€™s comprehensive audio post facility that puts creativity first. Founded in 1979, it is home to an elite staff of mixers and support staff committed to providing world-class audio post production and sound design for HDTV and SDTV, film, radio, online and interactive media. For more information, please visit http://www.nutmegaudiopost.com or call 212-921-8005.
Project: The T.O. Show promo
Agency: Vh1 (In-House)
Director/Writer: Tyler Greco
Vp On-Air Promos: Tony Maxwell
Senior Director On-Air Promos: Adam Wilson
Supervising Producer: Michael Flexner
Line Producer: Amber Harris
Executive Producer: Wendell Wooten
Evp Creative & Consumer Marketing: Nigel Cox-Hagen
Svp Branding & Design: Phil Delbourgo
Audio Post: Nutmeg Audio Post, New York
Mixer/Sound Designer: Mike Vitacco
Music: Explosion Robinson, New York
Creative Director: Stephen Hermann
Composer:Â Eddie Cooper
Editorial: Cause & [Effect], New York
Editor:Â Jamie Hubbard
Click here to watch the VH1/T.O. Show promo:
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