AES Los Angeles 2014
Tutorial T20

Sunday, October 12, 9:00 am — 10:30 am (Room 404 AB)


T20 - Audio Goes Video: Multimedia-Based Preservation of the Collection Oskar Sala or “How to Safeguard Hitchcocks The Birds”

Nadja Wallaszkovits, Phonogrammarchiv, Austrian Academy of Science - Vienna, Austria

Oskar Sala was a German musician, scientist and a pioneer of electronic music. He played and further developed the trautonium, a predecessor of the synthesizer. He composed the scores for more than 300 films and created the effect soundtrack for Alfred Hitchcock's film 'The Birds', receiving many awards for his works. After his death he left a collection of about 1200 analogue magnetic audio tapes, stored in the archives of Deutsches Museum in Munich. Oskar Sala fully exploited all the possibilities of analogue tape technology, using impressive experimental approaches. His tapes have become artworks themselves, as they comprise a unique richness of very special metadata: cut up to 200 times per reel, Sala used the tapes as a (more or less readable) notebook. Such and many more surprises made the adequate safeguarding and digitization of the collection a unique undertaking. The collection has been successfully digitized under the consultancy of the Phonogrammarchiv Vienna. The tutorial outlines the various challenges of this project and discusses the parameters and practical problems of the audio transfer, as well as the strategy of safeguarding the richness of metadata by use of multimedia-based documentation, such as photographic capturing and high definition video recording.

AES Technical Council This session is presented in association with the AES Technical Committee on Archiving Restoration and Digital Libraries

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