From Spotting Session to a Dubbing mix there are several proceses involved in any professional music production:
Probably the most crucial step in the film scoring process is the Spotting Session.
A director shouldn´t be looking for a music composer for his film. Instead he should be looking for someone that can help to tell the story in the best possible way throughout the music.
Film Scoring is NOT about creating beautiful music that suits the film but functional music that can keep the story surviving throughout the whole film.
COMPOSITION / ORCHESTRATION
In the composition process is where the main themes are created. These themes will be later used during the whole film with the necessary adjustments to work in terms of story telling throughout the whole film.
In the orchestration process all these themes are developed instrumentally according to the moods that are pursuited as well as the space that the film allows for it.
In this step is where the cues are created.
All the themes and orchestrations developed previously are put inside a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) and the cues are created to perfectly sync with the visuals based on the spotting sessions.
Once these are approved by the director/producer the next step comes up.
Once the orchestra is booked and we are ready to record the created music live, we need to translate all that computer language that was used to create the mockups to music language so the musicians can understand what do they have to exactly play.
This is a very important step because the more optimized the scores are, much better the musicians performance will be and more time will be saved in the recording session, something very important when you are working on a very tight budget.
Here is where the music is recorded live.
Depending on how complex the cues are, it can take several takes to get the desired performance by the musicians.
Thanks to the technology available nowadays, sometimes this can be done remotely by Skype.
MIX AND MASTERING
Once the recording session is finished, the orchestra deliver tons of individual tracks (different instruments, differents microphones and different takes) that have to be put together by a mixing/mastering engineer to achieve the sound that we are looking for.