Online Master's Degree Course

Professional Film Scoring Skills 2: Building Your Career

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Authored by Jessica Rae Huber

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Course Code: OCOMP-650

Next term starts January 13, 2020

Level 6 - Degree Only

Level 6

This course explores how to build your business acumen as it relates to the film scoring industry. The course teaches you how to build your professional network, create your own opportunities, and craft a life and career of scoring films and other media. You will explore how to maximize your strengths and use them to navigate the nuances and intricacies of the Hollywood film and TV scoring business. In addition, you will learn how to create polished demos and other marketing materials that distinguish you from other composers. 

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By the end of the course, you will be able to:

  • Work and communicate more effectively with directors
  • Understand passive income streams
  • Produce and submit cue sheets
  • Employ effective networking strategies
  • Work as your own agent and find upcoming projects with production charts and other methods
  • Contact decision-makers and submit for projects in a way that increases responsivity
  • Distinguish yourself from other composers and uniquely position yourself in the marketplace
  • Create persuasive and clearly branded demo and marketing materials
  • Develop a personalized marketing and action plan
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Overview Syllabus Requirements Instructors Request Info

Syllabus

Lesson 1: You are a Business

  • Developing a Vision and Mission
  • Conceptualizing Yourself as a Business
  • A Condensed Industry History
  • Logistics
  • Assignment 1: Your Vision

Lesson 2: You Are a Brand

  • The Composer’s Digital Essential
  • Your Website
  • Worst Digital Practices
  • Best Digital Practices
  • Assignment 2: Digital Marketing

Lesson 3: Your SWOT Analysis

  • Know Yourself
  • Identifying Your Market
  • Help Others. Help Yourself
  • Case Studies in Finding Your Market
  • Assignment 3: SWOT Analysis

Lesson 4: Advancing Your Network

  • Knowing Whom to Network With
  • Warm vs. Cold Leads
  • Turning a Weak Tie into a Strong one
  • Mentorship and Collegial Relationships
  • Assignment 4: Establishing a Network

Lesson 5: Workflow and Streamlining Technology

  • Creating Your Business Workflow
  • The Importance of Templates
  • Creating a System of Backups
  • Knowing When to Delegate
  • Assignment 5: Workflow

Lesson 6: Working on a Team

  • Givers, Takers, and Matchers
  • Communication is Key
  • Sharing the Mental Load
  • Giving and Taking Credit
  • Assignment 6: Building a Team

Lesson 7: Exploring Composer-Adjacent Careers

  • Music Editors
  • Orchestrators and Copyists
  • Composer Support Roles
  • Leveraging Adjacent Careers into Composing Careers
  • Getting Hired by Another Composer
  • Assignment 7: Career Development

Lesson 8: Exploring Different Models of Film Scoring

  • Flying Solo
  • Working With Contracted Help
  • Working With a Full-Time Staff
  • When Should You Expand?
  • Assignment 8: Genre Reels

Lesson 9: Understanding Revenue Streams

  • Ways Your Music Can Make Money
  • Being Your Own Publisher
  • Sampling and Synth Design
  • Music Libraries
  • Assignment 9: Preparing your Compositions for the Marketplace

Lesson 10: Professional Ethics: Developing an Approach

  • Major Ethical Approaches in History
  • Diversity in Contemporary Ethics
  • Pragmatism in Ethical Practice
  • Assignment 10: Ethical Mission Statement

Lesson 11: Professional Ethics: Examples and Care Studies

  • Clear Communication as Part of an Ethical Career
  • Case Studies of Applied Ethics
  • Moving Up in a Hierarchy
  • Drawing the Line
  • Assignment 11: Interview Project

Lesson 12: Work-Life Balance and Course Review

  • First Things First
  • Determining What’s Important
  • Every Yes is a No
  • Feeding the Creative Side

Requirements

Requirements coming soon.

General Course Requirements

Below are the minimum requirements to access the course environment and participate in live chats. Please make sure to also check the Prerequisites and Course-Specific Requirements section above, and ensure your computer meets or exceeds the minimum system requirements for all software needed for your course. 

Mac Users

PC Users

All Users

  • Latest version of  Google Chrome
  • Zoom meeting software (available in the course when joining your first chat)
  • Webcam
  • Speakers or headphones
  • External or internal Microphone
  • Broadband Internet connection

Instructors

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Author

Jessica Rae Huber is a film and television composer who has written music for projects such as The Walking Dead, Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Outlander, Black Sails, 60 Days In, and Constantine. She is an in-demand independent film composer and is frequently recruited to write additional music for other composers. She holds a degree in film and video game scoring from Berklee College of Music.

Questions?

Contact our Academic Advisors by phone at 1-866-BERKLEE (U.S.), 1-617-747-2146 (INT'L), or by email at advisors@online.berklee.edu.

We can also answer basic questions in the comments below. Please note that all comments are public.

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