What do theme parks sound like? For starters, there’s the sound of the people, the rides, the popcorn machines, the ambient noises of the highway and local wildlife. But there’s also an elaborate soundtrack that you may not have even known existed. And here’s how it’s made.
Kinja user and sound designer 8bitdan stopped into the comments to demystify just how your amusement park musical sausage actually gets made. The entire process is a mix of voiceovers, music, and individually-designed sound effects — and it’s perhaps more elaborate than you might have guessed:
I’m a Sound Designer for a theme park. People frequently don’t know what the hell that is and assume I play CDs in CD players stashed around the park. In actuality, I do about a million things that are all super fun. I design the audio for rides and attractions, including voice-overs for animatronics and sound effects for different physical props within the rides.
I get to build audio for massive Haunt-themed mazes and shows. When you walk through a Haunt maze, there is background music, and sound effects, and voiceovers playing everywhere, and I get to produce, direct, record, and mix those, and then I get to see my creation come to life. It’s truly fantastic.
Next time you go to a theme park, listen to every sound in the park. Either walking around on the midway, to going on the dark rides, to the live entertainment and shows. It’s an incredibly varied and fun job, and no two days are the same. And it is very rarely put together via some iTunes playlist. It’s created with massive Pro-Tools sessions with 100+ tracks of different effects/voiceovers/sounds all at once!
Image: Eftling Haunted Castle / Pacfrodo