Everywhere Little Witch goes, she hears sounds: so far, the forest has been moving and resonating. Near the fire, a kitten is purring. Farther away, music full of echoes and emptiness fills the ogre’s castle.
What you are listening to was created and arranged in the lefutur studio. The people there are the sound designers for Little Witch! To learn more about how they work with sound, we asked them a couple of questions.
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What do you think the role of sound in theatre is all about?
The reason we like theatre as a medium is that while it shares many conventions with television and movies (which makes it accessible), theatre is live, and draws even more upon our imagination and our sense of poetry.
In theatre, sound can completely change how a play is received, which means that it’s very important for us to remain subtle. Most of the time, we try to enhance or contrast parts of the play rather than underscoring them too obviously. From another standpoint, it’s sometimes extremely useful to be able to draw attention to or even accentuate one particular aspect to give it a larger-than-life dimension.
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What kinds of household or outdoor sounds can you use to make music?
At home, you can use pots partially filled with water, which you can hit and move around to get all kinds of cool sounds. We also like to use plastic plates with rubber bands around them (for a really inexpensive guitar). You can also use a hand mixer (ideally with continuously variable speeds, ha! ha!) to create tunes while cooking a meal. If you happen to have a phone or computer with a microphone, you can record sounds, giving you endless possibilities.
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What’s your favourite sound, or sound texture?
Generally, we have a soft spot for “woody” sounds that really come from wooden objects and instruments, or that resemble these kinds of sound characteristics. For us, they evoke nature. There’s something living, warm and imperfect about them.
Want to learn more? Read the full interview (in French only) on the lefutur website and find some bonus questions!