The Nova Scotia High School Drama Festival

Intro to Sound Design

with Ryan Wilcox

This workshop focuses on the roles and responsibilities of a sound designer during performances. We will begin by covering with the contractual obligations a sound designer is often responsible for (such as paperwork) and how the traditional role of a sound designer has shifted during COVID-19. Following this, participants will learn the basics of sound terminology and software that are commonly used in the industry, and resources within Halifax that could give students access to said software. This includes programs such as Audacity, Logic Pro X, Protools, and SoundForge, as well as free resources to begin creating a sound library. The students will then learn about the sound designer’s process from first reading the text to closing night. Ryan will lead a text analysis exercise with the participants to provide insight into the artistic process. Ryan will share a series of production photos that students will be encouraged to suggest sound cues suited to the environment. Lastly, Ryan will touch on composition for performance, midi instrumentation, and some common techniques that musically progress the story. This will include underscore techniques that are common in films, and include examples from hollywood films such as Interstellar.

All DramaFest workshops have limited availability and may also be limited due to bookings by other classes.

Drama 10 Outcome

  • Students will use drama to explore, formulate, and express ideas, perceptions, and feelings.
    • This will be learned through learning text analysis and the design process.


Drama 11 Outcome 

  • Students will address problems and make decisions relating to their drama work.
    • Students will have an understanding of sound systems, and sound design techniques, providing them with the ability to address problems in both sound systems and designs.

Ryan Wilcox is a queer, multidisciplinary artist with a love of collective creation. Their goal in theatre is to create a catalytic environment for new Canadian work that focuses on the voices that have yet to be heard and the questions that have yet to be answered. Through their training in Production Design and Technical Arts, they hope to enhance the creative companies they work by using collaborative approaches that see beyond the traditional structures of theatre. Before attending NTS, Ryan completed Dalhousie University’s Technical Scenography program.

  1.  Students remain seated throughout this workshop.

Book now

Please note: Theatre Nova Scotia respectfully requests that schools and community groups ideally do not cancel workshops once they are booked, unless absolutely necessary. If a group must cancel or reschedule, please give us a week of prior notice. In these precarious days for arts workers, TNS is going to great lengths to provide schools with exceptional theatre education and local artists with paid work in our industry. Please be aware that artists may have turned down other paid work to accommodate these workshop bookings. Thank you for your understanding.

Please get in touch with us if you have any questions. 

Students stay seated throughout this workshop.