How Do I Become a Movie Conductor?

G. Wiesen
G. Wiesen
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Woman posing

If you want to become a movie conductor, you should receive some formal training or education in music with a focus on conducting and music theory. Many film conductors work in another aspect of music conducting before entering the film industry, though you may be able to find opportunities to enter film without extensive experience. You should also consider taking classes on film and learning about the composition and purpose of music in film to help you better understand how to work with filmmakers. Once you have the education and background you need to become a movie conductor, then you should contact production companies and composers to find opportunities within the industry.

You should begin by considering the type of education you might need to become a movie conductor. There can be a great deal of competition for work as a movie conductor, especially for someone who is just starting out and may not have much experience. You should consider an education in music, either at a college or university with a good music program or at a school meant for musicians and those interested in conducting. This education can prepare you to find work in any type of music conducting and can help you become a movie conductor.

Once you have the education to become a movie conductor, you should look for opportunities to gain conductor experience. While you may be able to directly enter the film music industry, this can be rather difficult, so you should consider finding work in other fields. You can gain experience as a conductor for smaller music groups first and work your way up to larger venues and more musicians. There may also be some opportunities for you to become an apprentice or assistant to an established movie conductor, which can help you establish contacts within the film music industry.

You may also want to consider taking some film classes to gain a general understanding and appreciation for film music. This is not essential, especially if you do not plan on composing music for movies, but it can make it easier for you to collaborate with filmmakers and composers. Such an education can also help you better understand pacing and different uses of music in movies, which can make you a stronger candidate to become a movie conductor.

As you complete your education and begin finding work conducting, then you should look for opportunities to become a movie conductor. Apprenticeships and working as an assistant to other composers or conductors can help you make contacts within the industry, and this type of network is often essential to finding work. You can also “cold call” film or television production companies to look for opportunities. As you work with more musicians and filmmakers, then you should find it easier to continue developing your abilities and reputation, which often makes it easier to find new opportunities and projects to work on.

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