© 2013 Benjamin G. Stickels.  Proudly created with Wix.com

Below are representative samples of sound design I have completed for professional and academic theatres.  Please click on a "Play" button to hear audio samples from the show.

The Red Badge of Courage

Children's Theatre of Charlotte, 2013

Director: Sidney Horton

The Red Badge of Courage was the first show I designed for the Children's Theatre of Charlotte.  A hip-hop interpretation of the book, there was a DJ on stage for the public performances.  This demo clip gives an overview of the show without the beats and music coming from the DJ booth, and showcases the atmospheres and environments created for the show.

Hamlet

Texas Shakespeare Festival, 2011

Director: Lee Ernst

Hamlet was part of the 2011 season at the Texas Shakespeare Festival.  We used a surround sound system to allow for an immersive experience for the audience, as if they were inside the walls of the castle itself.  The set was comprised of a series of columns, with sheer curtains rigged between them, allowing for rapid changes of location while keeping the action moving.

How I Learned to Drive

UNC Charlotte, 2012

Director: Lon Bumgarner

How I Learned to Drive was the season opener for the UNC Charlotte Department of Theatre's 12/13 Season.  The system was basic - stereo pairs for music playback, a practical speaker for shower sounds, and a wireless speaker worn by an actress for the high school scenes.  Sounds were played back via Qlab v2.

 

A local actor was hired to record the 'subtitles' used throughout the show, and ambient sounds to help ground us in locations - crickets, distant traffic, crowds, and other similar sounds helped move us from place to place.

Measure for Measure

Texas Shakespeare Festival, 2012

Director: Chuck Ney

Measure for Measure was part of the 2012 season at the Texas Shakespeare Festival.  Set in the early 1800's, New Orleans, the director and I tried to develop 3 distinct worlds over the course of the play: the ridged, law abiding, the loose, law/moral breaking, and the forgotten world of the jails.  I used varied sounds to create these worlds (fiddle music, monks chanting, water dripping) in order to make sure we always knew where we were.

 

The audio playing is the beginning sequence of the show - the tail end of a party, scattering as they hear the solitary governor, arbitrator of morality, approaching.

Project Hope

UNC Charlotte, 2012

Director: Robin Witt

Project Hope was the UNC Charlotte Department of Theatre's contribution to the "Violins of Hope" intiative in the College of Arts + Architecture.  The piece was devised by students and faculty, based off of interviews with local member of the community.

 

For Project Hope,  original music was composed for some scenes by a student in the department, Josiah Shin.  Additional underscores and sound effects were created by myself, and molded together for the final product.

 

This audio includes original music by composer Josiah Shin.

Killer Joe

UMKC Theatre, 2009

Director: Theodore Swetz

Killer Joe was part of the 2009 season at the University of Missouri - Kansas Ciy.  We had an incredibly realistic set installed in a small black box.  Despite the small nature of the space, I employed multiple speakers (roughly a dozen, plus 2 subs) to fully immerse the audience in the world of the show.  In addition to the surround speakers used for rain and thunder, I used multiple spot speakers for the TV, radio, dog barking, and bathroom scene in the beginning.

 

The audio playing is a compressed version of the entire show.

 

The Cure at Troy

UMKC Theatre, 2008

Director: Barry Kyle

The Cure at Troy was the season closer for the 07/08 season at UMKC.  Three incoming sound design students were assigned to co-design the show, with original music composed by one of the graduating designers.  Each member of the team worked individually on complex segments of the show; the best bits from each were then taken and combined into the completed segments for the show.  Such segments included the massive eruption of the island at the end of the play, as well as an incoming, hovering, and departing helicopter.

 

The system was fairly involved, and was programmed using SFX 5.6.  16 channels from SFX were used, as well as 3 channels of microphones for various vocal effects (primarily on the chorus).

 

This collage showcases both the original music created by Matthew Janszen, and the sound effects.