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Friday, Sep 16, 2005
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Martin Benge Photo: Vino John
CHENNAI: "Yeesss! I always get asked about the Beatles," says Martin Benge, an international consultant on sound engineering, whose credits include working with the Beatles, John Lennon's "Across the Universe."
In the city, courtesy SAE Technology College, Benge shared his views on global trends in audio engineering technology.
"I have worked with many other great artistes, and I like other kinds of music a lot too, like jazz and classical," says Benge. "But when you are young, music is a big influence, and yes the Beatles and their sound have had a great influence on my life," says Benge.
In a 43-year-long career at began at 17 as an electrical engineer at EMI's factory, Martin Benge has worked with many stars. George Harrison, Daniel Barenboim, Yehudi Menuhin and John Sangster rank as his favourites.
Benge over the years has moved from being a sound engineer, to studio manager in Australia and vice-president for EMI Virgin UK studio group when the two companies merged in 1993, before coming back to Sydney to work as a consultant.
As a design and technical and acoustic consultant, he helped set up the Petronas Twin Towers Concert Hall, and the post-production centre, Symphony (which he says are among the best in the world) at Ramoji Film City in Hyderabad.
He works with the sound designer Sam Toyoshima and the Acoustic Design Group, and Tom Misner's Studios 301 (Misner's the man behind SAE - the school of audio engineering).
Rathish Babu, CEO, SAE India, explained the steps being taken to get UGC recognition for the college's degree and postgraduate programmes. He also explained the college's placement record.
Rathish Babu and Benge emphasised the need for professional training to get an entry into the tough world of music technology.
Although Benge believes that India's film industry, with its musicals, would provide a lot more opportunities to audio engineers, he mentioned the new digital challenges, namely piracy and the need for companies to develop online business models a la `Apple iTunes,' and review the archaic copyright laws.
The SAE also organised a session where Mr. Benge interacted with sound engineers and music directors of the industry.
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