Almost everyone knows the musical story of "Peter & The Wolf" by Sergei Prokofiev. Peter and the Wolf is a great introduction to the orchestra and the various orchestral instruments. Each character is represented by a different orchestral instrument and a different melody. This is an interesting way to begin to learn about orchestral music. The Bird's Theme is played by a Flute, the Duck's Theme is played by an Oboe, the Cat's Theme is played by a Clarinet, the Grandfather's Theme is played by the Bassoon, the Wolf's Theme is played by French Horns, the Hunter's Theme is played by the Timpani, and lastly, Peter's Theme is played by the Strings in the orchestra.
Karl Garrett has undertaken the formidible task of realizing the entire Peter and the Wolf score. In addition, his wife Joani has narrated the entire story and did a fantastic job. I really like hearing a woman's voice doing the narration for this time-honored classic (this may be a first).
Karl, tremendous job! Sounds like a real orchestra. Did you play those parts in? Step entry? Tell me, tell me! And Joan (my wife's name is Joan also ), Your Voice Over is exactly spot on...just perfect for what this project needs, IMHO. I see no reason why your CD of "Peter and the Wolf" wouldn't be a great success (an audio book?). Since Gary said that you guys are looking for input for how to make this rendition better, I will offer my 2 cents if you don't mind too terribly.
I listened to the whole thing at a soft-to-moderate volume. What I observed was that there is a huge dynamic range in your rendition. While this is natural in orchestral performances and many old-school classical recordings, a story with V/O, I believe, calls for a different view of overall dynamics. In this case we have the soft parts way too soft and the loud parts way too loud. Moreover, Joani's voice, in contrast, comes across as way too soft when she is up against the louder sections of the music. I felt the need to reach for the volume control on my sound system (vintage JBL Studio Monitor 4406's) and turn her up, but then the horns would knock me back against the wall, and I had to crawl back and turn the volume dial back again. Well, that was a too dramatic accounting, I admit, but I think you probably know what I mean.
Now, how to fix the dynamic range? Well, there a lot of people on this forum who are much smarter than me when it comes to these things. But if people will pitch in and help us out here, I suspect that you will be getting advice about dynamic compression tools (possible of course in either hardware or software plugins). If you already know about all this stuff, then by all means I encourage you to experiment further with this rendition of P&TW. But one resource is Mix Magazine (they are also on line), or maybe even EQ Mag (they are also published by the same corp as Keyboard Mag).
Good luck! This is great!!
Hi Karl, thanks for checking up on me. I have been swamped with the piano Concerto that I am doing, so I have only checked the forum but have not posted much, certainly only because I am pressed for time. Thank you for your concern, you're the best!
Daag Nabbot brings up a good point,.... the dynamics are too much, but as you know, compression is not the way to fix it, that would be the lazy thing to do. Compression would definately minimize the excessive volume peaks, but it would ruin the Altiverb breathing. I would simply go back and perform some fader automation on the "master" in DP.
Excellent job too!
Did your friend ever get over his cough.