Sound editor/designer Milos Stojanovic talks to us about his new talent agency that exclusively serves the audio post-production domain.
Despite the sheer volume of talent agencies based in London but operating internationally, it is difficult to find one that matches Sound Professionals’ proposition.
While the new collective specialises in providing a full range of sound post-production services for film and TV including consultations, Milos Stojanovic aims to uphold it as an alternative to already saturated and competitive networks in the sector, and hopes it will become the first port of call for anyone seeking out audio professionals in a multitude of capacities.
What were your original motivations for starting the company?
The idea to start Sound Professionals came about a couple of years ago when my colleagues and I started to notice an apparent shift in content production and the way freelancers get work. The rapidly developing technology and increasing affordability of equipment nowadays mean more and more people can shoot, edit and publish material.
Although this is a good thing which means there is now more content being created then ever before, perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are increasing variations in quality not only online but in the broadcast world as well. Together with the fact that sound often serves as the last link in the post-production chain and is considered very late in the process, it becomes easier to understand why there is often much room for improvement.
Like myself, a large number of my colleagues come from the world of feature film and TV audio where budgets normally allow a group of 3-10 people editing and mixing for weeks if not months to deliver a 1-2 hour soundtrack. However even if you are lucky enough to be within a small group of people doing our type of work you are very likely to come across weeks if not months without a project in sight. So we started to ask ourselves how could we work with our colleagues and support them in their career paths while attracting new clients in need of professional sound services.
Do you think it’s harder for freelance audio professionals to find regular work then?
Being a freelancer I always felt that audio professionals were under-represented and finding the next job usually comes down to good old-fashioned word of mouth. Even though there are many websites and talent agencies out there the fact is that very few list audio professionals at all. For many of us finding the next project becomes a job in its own right. That’s why my colleagues and I decided to start Sound Professionals, a collective and talent agency specialising in sound post-production for Film and TV with the idea of being a professional alternative to low/no pay work sites and international networks of professionals competing with their hourly rates.
Could you describe the structure of the company and tell us how it operates?
At our core we have five founder members who have all been involved in high-end film and television programmes. They are: Max Hoskins (dialogue editor/sound supervisor), sound designers: Nikola Medic and Ruben Agguire Barba, dubbing mixer George Pinnock and myself. We each have eight or more years of experience in sound post-production while Max Hoskins has been in the business for nearly 30 years and our combined list of credits includes critically acclaimed productions such as Jason Bourne, London Fields and Da Vinci’s Demons.
Our approach is to work closely with our clients to deliver a solution that best suits the needs of their individual projects/productions and the budgets available. So a client can get in touch to discuss an upcoming project or upload their video and get a free consultation with a few pricing options in return.
All our members have professional equipment and are able to work remotely in stereo or multichannel setups. We have also teamed up with a number of sound post houses to facilitate our clients during spotting and mixing sessions as well as Foley and ADR/VO recording. This enables us to achieve very competitive prices while still ensuring all our members get industry standard rates.
Other than the fact you’re audio-only, what else makes you unique?
What sets us apart from similar companies is our flexible business approach. Not being tied to leasing a property for our own studios enables us to keep overheads to a minimum and focus on specific needs of each project. As an agency that specialises in sound, only we have experienced sound editors and mixers in charge of each booking. This way we ensure the right person is assigned to a project based on their experience and area of expertise.
We offer a full range of sound post-production services as well as consultations and our clients can choose anything from a single task such as dialogue editing to a full package deal including a dedicated sound supervisor. In terms of memberships we are open for new applications and will always be on the lookout for creative and likeminded individuals.
What are your plans for the future?
Going forward we are hoping to become the go-to place for anyone looking for audio professionals. This could be anything from hiring freelancers to helping with busy post schedules, entire sound post teams or recruiting for a full time position. At the same time we will be helping our colleagues achieve their career goals. We also believe we could prove to be an important partner to production companies, agencies and video post houses who would benefit from the pool of creative talent we offer and our flexible working approach.