Peter Mauder: Mixchecker has literally saved me days of messing around
Peter Mauder is a composer, musician, music director, collaborator, sound designer and mainly a founder of Phonotheque – an East London-based Creative Music Composition and Production Studio. Phonotheque now has a roster of clients covering three continents including BBC, Disney and MTV.
What projects are you currently working on?
I’ve got a few projects in the pipeline at the moment. I’m just putting the finishing touches to an interactive score for the BBC’s first VR venture with their flagship natural history series (Life on Earth, Blue Planet, Planet Earth) called ‘Life In VR’. It’s a pretty big project and has been fascinating trying to orchestrate a non-linear score. I’m very happy with the results. I’m also working on an ident for film distribution and sales company Altitude Films - looking forward to hearing the final mix in the cinema. A couple of trailers on the horizon, the usual library music on the back burner and a couple of other ongoing projects for gaming studios. I’m also about to start composing a score for a contemporary dance piece ‘Othello’.
What was the impulse to found Phonotheque?
To be honest it just kind of happened naturally. I’d been writing commercially for quite a while and needed to have an entity that I could focus that work into - gradually the idea took shape and Phonotheque was finally launched 8 years ago. I’ve now got clients all around the world and in all media from film, the arts and trailers to games and VR.
What are the main projects you are proud of?
Certainly the BBC Earth : Life in VR project has been the most challenging and highest profile work of my career to date, and is some of my best orchestral writing, but I think my favourite piece of work is piano piece I wrote for a trailer. I was asked to come up with something for Hirozaku Kore-Eda’s very moving film ‘Like Father, Like Son’ and spent a day sitting at the piano with a mirror angled on the music stand so I could see the trailer and write to fit the cut. It’s a pretty simple piece - in the final composition the left hand mirrors the right to reflect the title of the film.
What do you think about London’s music scene?
It’s always been a bit of secret source of pride for me to have one of the best music scenes in the world right here. I think London is still as musically important, individual and lively as it ever has been.What Audified plugins do you use?
Why is it valuable for you?
I’d long been looking for ways to preview my work on the wide variety of devices it’s likely to be heard on, and previously the only means I had available was to bounce down a mix, send it to the devices and preview it on each. Mixchecker has literally saved me days of messing around - I load it up on the master output, hit the simulation button for each device i need and have an instant representation that I can make any adjustments I need right there in the DAW.
How would you describe your studio?
I love it. It’s in a building with loads of other creative people in my favourite part of town (London Fields) and has everything I need at my fingertips. I’ll sometimes start working at home where I have a grand piano and a bit more space, then bring things here to be fleshed out and developed. It’s fairly small but I’ve given a lot of attention to the setup, and I know I can trust what I’m hearing when I’m at work.