Theatrical Sound Designers and Composers Association

Panel Discussion: Composer or Sound Designer?


90 minutes

Panel Discussion: Composer or Sound Designer?

Tom Parkinson, Sarah Angliss and Nicola Chang

What is the difference between composition and sound design? Does being a musician help your design process? Can you ever really do both? Join the panel as they try to answer these questions and more.

Not a member, but would like to come to this session? Don’t worry! Winter School is open to Association Members, Educators, Young Future Professionals and Students, email us letting us know which category you fit into and we’ll let you know the booking code.

Tom Parkinson

Tom is a composer and sound designer working primarily in an interdisciplinary context. He has made the music for over 80 dance and theatre productions in twenty countries. Companies he has made music at/with include The National Theatre, The National Theatre of Tunisia, The National Dance Company of Korea, Scottish Ballet, Prague Chamber Ballet, Dance Theatre Yekaterinburg, The Young Vic, Residenz Munich, Complicite and Forest Fringe. Regular collaborators include theatre-makers Bryony Kimmings and Sharon Smith and choreographers Keren Levi and Ivgi&Greben. He is musical director of Dance Leeuwarden and is a lecturer in digital composition at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Sarah Angliss

Distinctive composition and sound design, bringing new ideas to theatre – from notated music to experimental electronic and algorithmic techniques.

I’m particularly keen on projects which blur the boundaries between composition and sound design. A classically trained musician with degrees in electroacoustics and robotics, I’m able to blend complex, original instrumental composition with the latest electronic and algorithmic techniques. I’m a fluent QLab programmer and am also versed in Max – software which originates from IRCAM, Paris. I use Max to transform sounds radically through dynamic and responsive processing.

As a published historian of sound culture, I also enjoy creating sounds that are particular to a certain location or era. In fact some of my non-theatre projects – such as The Machinery and HMS Alliance – have required me to compose highly accurate reconstructions of historic soundworlds. The Alliance piece was created in close consultation with veteran submariners – it’s a form of sonic documentary.

Nicola T Chang

Nicola is a sound designer/composer for theatre, film, audio dramas and commercial media across the UK, US and Asia. As a performer, she has played for Six the Musical (West End) as Dep MD and is a former cast member of STOMP! (West End/World Tour). She is also a BFI x BAFTA Crew Member and a Composer and Musical Director attached to British Youth Music Theatre UK.

Nicola has performed at the Royal Albert Hall, the Royal Festival Hall and the Shakespeare’s Globe as a percussionist. In 2017, she conducted the London Film Music Orchestra playing her original soundtrack to The Perfect Dinner accompanied by a live film screening, and premiered her concerto for Ping Pong and Piano Trio at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in January 2019. This concerto was performed in Shanghai later in the year.

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