One thing I’ve found to be true over 27 years in the music business is that guesswork and hoping for the best will only get you so far.
The most massive leaps I have made in my career have been when I’ve taken time to learn from the best in the business.
And that’s why I’m so excited to introduce into The Songwriting Academy an old friend of mine that used to play in rival bands when I was a kid, but is now an A-list Hollywood film composer. This guy is a legend.
For the first time ever, Hollywood film composer Rupert Gregson-Williams (Aquaman/Hacksaw Ridge/Wonder Woman and many more) is looking for aspiring film composers to work with over 8 weeks in an exclusive online masterclass group which will be LIVE and fully interactive.
A lucky group of candidates will get the chance to work with and learn from the genius behind 50 Hollywood blockbuster movies.
In just 8 weeks you will learn how to create the perfect soundtrack for any kind of scene in any movie.
Rupert is going to lead you step by step through his own personal workflow process, from the time he receives the original cuts from the world’s biggest movie makers, to creating the right atmosphere, all the way to developing a fully formed movie score to wow the directors.
To be a successful applicant you should have a dedicated and serious interest in film scoring, the appropriate recording environment (see FAQ) to create music for picture and the ability to work to a deadline.
You’ll be introduced to up and coming filmmakers, and we’ll help you build relationships and collaborations that could change your career.
At the end of the course you will receive The Songwriting Academy Diploma in Film Composition signed by Rupert Gregson-Williams.
This is one of the most exciting course plans ever and I’m so excited to share it with you and take part myself!
Over 8 weeks Rupert is going to teach the entire process of creating, recording, mixing and dubbing, as well as how to break into the business.
Each week there will be three sessions. Two will be spent with Rupert in live and fully interactive webinars, while the third will be spent working offline on the week’s practical assignment.
Every Monday you’ll be invited to join a live and fully interactive masterclass online with Rupert, where you’ll be shown the secrets of how to become a Hollywood film composer. See table below for the full detailed schedule.
At the end of each Monday webinar, Rupert will set you a carefully planned assignment to create an original piece of music for film, using the techniques he has taught you. You’ll be working to a deadline on a different assignment each week to help you develop your skills as quickly as possible.
Every Friday you will be invited back online for your second live masterclass with Rupert. Listen to his personal feedback on some of the compositions created in the group, how well they would work on the big screen, and how they could be improved. Will your score take the limelight?
At the start of the course Rupert will be sharing a carefully selected video short from an up and coming film maker with you. Your special assignment will be to study it over the 8 weeks, experiment with it during the course and try new composition approaches as you learn them.
In the final week of the course, you will be asked to finalise your choice of theme and orchestration for the video, record it, mix it and dub it into the video for assessment.
In the very last assessment webinar, Rupert will share his favourite compositions for the assignment, and three composers will be given certificates of commendation, while one will be awarded the certificate for ‘Best Composition’.
To add to the excitement of this assignment, Rupert will be also scoring the same video short, so you’ll be able to compare and contrast your work with his!
From week one you’ll start seeing the improvements immediately in your compositions. After 8 weeks you won’t believe how far you’ve come and how much you know. You’ll learn skills that will stay with you for the rest of your life, and if you do the work…those skills and this knowledge could change your life.
You’ll be able to get peer-to-peer feedback on your music and production, and share tips and techniques in our exclusive community dedicated to Hollywood Film Scoring Masterclass students only. Here you’ll be able to network with serious, passionate composers just like you.
For 8 weeks you’ll be interacting directly with Rupert Gregson-Williams, a legend in the movie industry. To meet and work alongside a successful composer like this is an opportunity you will never get in your ‘regular life’.
At the end of each lecture there will be a Q&A session where you can ask Rupert all these burning questions about writing for film.
Someone smart once said “The opposite of networking is not working“. Networking is everything in the music business and as a serious composer, songwriter, artist or producer, you need to get to know others to work with, work for, or have work for you.
That’s why this course is so much more than ‘education’. It’s giving you vital connections to other film composers film makers, songwriters, producers and music business figures, as well as a like-minded network of people around the world all with a shared goal of success.
Don’t worry if you can’t make all the live masterclasses, we’ll be uploading videos of them to watch afterwards at your leisure, along with useful time cues to help you navigate to your favourite sections, plus any additional course notes or downloads. You’ll have lifetime access to all the webinars and course content.
All participants in the course will receive a Diploma in Film Composition signed by Rupert Gregson-Williams as a mark of achievement.
It’s easy to see that what you’re going to learn from Rupert in this course is almost impossible to put a price on.
We know you could go to other colleges for a course on film scoring…but we also know you won’t get face to face time with Rupert or for that matter anyone even remotely close to having his kind of resumé.
We believe in putting quality first and even though Rupert is still working on Hollywood film scores during lockdown, both he and I wanted to make this as affordable as possible for anyone passionate about their music and who wants to pursue their dream.
If you want to be the best, learn from the best, in 24 pro level sessions of education, feedback, networking and development.
We’re also going to make things easier for those of you who can’t afford full payment instantly. We’ll give you the option of two-pay for this course, meaning 75% payment down to get started and then 25% payment 30 days later. There is a surcharge for this but we hope it makes things easier.
If you’re serious about your music you’ll realise the benefit of investing in this one-time-only course where you can:
Please do not apply if you are not willing to show up, listen to advice or learn new skills. We are not looking for composers who simply want to buy a diploma. We’re looking for positive, enthusiastic people who want to do the work. If that’s you please go ahead and enrol now
|WEEK 1||29/06/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: GETTING THE JOB
- Reading a script
- Watching an unfinished cut of a movie
- Absorbing the story
- Having a meeting with the director with an objective
- What can you bring to the party
- What do you feel is missing from the movie that you can help with
- What are the strengths and weaknesses of the temp they are using
- What will you do about it
- Are you going to be great to work with
|29/06/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Getting the director's attention with a composition|
|03/07/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 2||06/07/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: STARTING THE WORK
- What to do when the scenes arrive
- How the scenes arrive
- What are the expectations
- What are the deadlines
- Understanding and working to a budget
- How to start creating music
- Building a framework
- Setting your aims
- Discussions with the director on the story
- A suite of themes
- A practical demo of how to go about a melody
- Finding a sound
- Getting inside a character's head
|06/07/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Composing with rhythm and percussion|
|10/05/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 3||17/05/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: BUILDING A SUITE OF THEMES
- Creative orchestration tips
- How much instrumentation is enough
- Finding unique sounds for the movie and its characters
- Understanding and working with sonics
- Building rhythmic elements
- Are you writing a melody, a hook or a groove
- The architecture of programming
- Working with a music editor
|24/05/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Score a theme created by Rupert|
|31/05/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 4||07/06/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: PRESENTATION
- Presenting to the director and the film studio
- Getting under the skin of the film
- Speaking from the heart and getting vulnerable
- How to react
- How to run the meeting
- How to build relationships
- Earning trust with the film makers
- Why honesty is everything
- Getting emotionally involved
|14/06/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Composing variations on a theme|
|21/06/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 5||28/06/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: BUILDING A TEAM
- Booking an orchestra
- Specialist musicians
- Working with a music editor
- Technical troubleshooting
- Working with additional writers
- When do you need an agent
- How new cuts affect your music cues
- How much budget do you have to work with
- Planning your time effectively throughout the project
- Booking an orchestra
- Working with music unions
- Finding specialist musicians
|05/07/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Composing with minimal orchestration for maximum impact|
|12/07/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 6||19/07/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: WORKING WITH CHANGES
- Reacting to new cuts
- 'Spotting' and why it is crucial
- How CGI can require change in your composition
- Getting pushed back on themes
- Being brave enough to ditch and start again
- Bringing in additional composers to cope with new changes
- Recording and mixing to deadlines in TV
|26/07/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Scoring for animation|
|02/08/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 7||09/08/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: THE FINAL RECORDING
- Pro recording tips and techniques
- What is your part to play
- Planning for a mix
- Working with a mixer or when to mix it yourself
- Who decides the dub positions and levels
- How can you contribute to the dub
- How long does the dub take
- Being creative with the dub
|16/08/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Scoring with no orchestra|
|23/08/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment and discussion of assignment|
|WEEK 8||30/08/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: HOW TO BREAK INTO THE BUSINESS
- How to become an additional writer
- Honing your skills
- Should you write for music libraries
- Finding and working with new film-makers
- The importance of communication and networking
- Having the right equipment
- Knowing your strengths and uncovering your weaknesses
- Learning management skills
- Finding your voice and getting noticed because of it
- The power of authenticity
|06/09/2020||OFFLINE ASSIGNMENT: Finalising and presenting your 'Special Course Assignment'|
|CLOSE||13/09/2020||LIVE WEBINAR: Assessment of 'Special Course Assignment' and presentation of awards by Rupert|
Thank you for sharing your insights and revelations! It’s truly a beautiful gift to have people willing to share what they have learned.
Thanks Martin, this is awesome!
Brilliant first session Martin. Very insightful and learnt so much! A lot of great techniques to take away from that webinar, I will be using the 7 step planner immediately. Looking forward to the assignment and the next 49 weeks.
I wanted to let you know that already from your masterclass last night, I feel like I am in the right place – this is exactly the kind of support I needed right now at this stage in my career. Furthermore, having taken other academic courses in songwriting, I really love and value your particular approach, mindset and the content of your teaching from your professional experience, it really is compressing “decades into days”.
Wow, wow, wow— Thank you so much for the stellar Week One webinar, Martin. My thoughts are just racing right now. And I am a bit nervous and freaked out at the moment… ha ha. I haven’t been active making music in over 25 years. But the assignment is just the kick in the back-side that I need right now to actually get me creating again. I’m the master ninja of procrastination– so this is really the push to get me moving. Thank you so much for the push to get going, Martin. Much gratitude
I just wanted to thank both of you for your time, song critique and suggestions. I found the call with Angela extremely informative and helpful. Martin your analysis of my tune was spot on! I will pair my skills together with your suggestions and come up with a plan to proceed forward. Thanks again!
I am sure you have hundreds of emails but I just wanted to thank you most sincerely for being so generous with your time, giving us such a good webinar and sharing your love of songwriting. It was great, useful and enjoyable.