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The UK Screen Association's fifth annual Conch Awards, held at Floridita in Wardour Street, London, once again highlighted the best of British audio post production. The Conch has quickly established itself, in the words of Gaynor Davenport, the association's chief executive, "as the barometer of excellence in the audio sector. Every year the standard seems to get higher, and the quality of this year's nominations was remarkable.'
The awards also served to underline AMS Neve's dominance in the high-end post production market, with Ascent 142 (DFC/Libra Post), Boom (DFC/DMC/PS1), De Lane Lea (DFC), Goldcrest (DFC), Grand Central (DFC), Hackenbacker (MMC/Libra Post) and Pepper Post (DFC/Libra Post) all featuring among the winners.
Chris Burdon of De Lane Lea (recently refitted with USP-loaded AMS Neve DFCs in its three main dubbing theatres after its enforced closure following a fire in a neighbouring building) won the prestigious Film Re-recording Mixer award, with Stuart Hilliker of Boom nominated. Meanwhile, with the award for Film Soundtrack Over Â£10 million going to Kick Ass, AMS Neve scored a triple whammy â€“ the score was recorded at Abbey Road and Air Lyndhurst (both equipped with Neve 88RS scoring consoles) while audio post production took place on the DFC at Goldcrest's refurbished Dean Street Theatre. Goldcrest's three DFC rooms â€“ the Dean Street Theatre, Theatre 1 and Theatre 2 â€“ were also nominated for the Film Mix Facility award.
The successes weren't only in the large-format categories, however. Boom won and Pepper was nominated in the TV Mix Facility category, with Boom also nominated as Sound Design/ Editorial Facility. And when it came to the award for TV Drama, it was a clean sweep for AMS Neve-equipped facilities, with Wallander (Boom) pipping Luther (Pepper) and Spooks (Hackenbacker) to the post, so to speak. TV Dubbing Mixer, unsurprisingly, went to Boom's Paul Hamblin, with Adam Severs of De Lane Lea (and previously Yorkshire TV) and Howard Bargroff of Pepper, also nominated, while Ascent 142's Chris Roberts was nominated as TV Sound Editor.
Grand Central Studios, as usual, was prominent in the Commercial/ Promo category, with Nike's "Write the future' winning and Guinness's "Bring it to life' nominated, while the facility itself was also nominated.
AMS Neve congratulates all the winners and nominees, and particularly those in the Unsung Hero and Most Promising Newcomer categories. Joe Maher of De Lane Lea, whose recent credits as re-recording engineer include The Boat That Rocked and Fantastic Mr Fox was voted Unsung Hero. Adam Davidson, ADR recordist at Ascent 142 (pictured), won the award for Most Promising Newcomer, with Grand Central's Steven Lane nominated.