What is Sound Montage in Film_

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What is Sound Montage in Film?

Montage represents a film editing technique that is commonly used to combine a series of clips, visually or audibly. Such that they are sequenced in a way that they imply the passage of time. Montages generally represent multiple events. Or multiple moments taking place in a single place or across multiple locations. Such that they deliver a lot of information to the audience in minimal time. The use of montage in filmmaking and editing is a common occurrence that is dominated by visuals. But sound montages can also be used by film editors. What is sound montage in film? And how can it be recognized?

What is Sound Montage in Film?

Sound montage represents the very first theory of sound. In which the creation of a new song or section of music for film is pieced together from various sounds or sections of other songs. Sometimes referred to as a sound collage. The sound montage is much like the visual montage.

It connects various clips of sound through thematic elements to show progression. Sound montages essentially layer sounds together. In order to create a song that features the layered melodies which then create the desired atmosphere.

The use of sound montage dates back to the 1910s. But wouldn’t find a way into film for several more years. In the late 1920s, avant-garde filmmaker Walter Ruttmann would introduce Wochenende, a sound montage that would later be deemed an “experimental electronic artform.”

Sound Montage Theory

In filmmaking, the idea of sound montage as a theory of filmmaking that could be studied would come up alongside montage theory studies.

The idea of sound montage, which was theorized alongside the arrival of recorded synchronized sound. Which was just being introduced in films would represent the first theory of sound and image that was used to derive ideas and explanations of music in film. 

Theorist, Sergei Eisenstein, would be the most influential sound montage theorist representing and testing many of his theories and ideas in his own feature films.

Throughout the study of montage theory, and the impact of sound as a crucial notion. Filmmakers and film criticism has long followed the use of sound and audio techniques in film and in montage sequences. 

Sound Montage in Modern Film

What is sound montage in film? Sound montage in modern filmmaking represents the use of sound clips from multiple sources to create a single sound or audio track.

Sounds can come from a variety of sources. And when layered together may create various moods or effects.

The use of sound montage both as an editing technique and as a theory has been present in filmmaking for nearly 100 years.