“The Gene Pool” Featured on Seattle Gay Scene

"The Gene Pool" at Annex Theatre, Capitol Hill, Seattle

We are grateful for Seattle Gay Scene for running the feature Arouet’s “The Gene Pool” offers LGBTQ theater for Pride month. They interviewed director Roy Arauz about The Gene Pool.

[quote]Roy Arauz: To me the play is about how normal and traditional a “non-traditional” family actually is. Here you have a couple that has been together for more than 18 years, dealing with all the issues that come with any long-term relationship.[/quote]

Read the entire article and interview at Seattle Gay Scene.

Sound Design for “The Gene Pool”

I have a pretty extensive sound library, but I ran into a roadblock when creating the motorcycle effects for The Gene Pool: all of my field recordings were of motorcycles coming or going, and therefor they always incorporated the doppler effect, rendering most of my motorcycle effects useless. I needed sustained motorcycle sounds to authentically coincide with the dialog and staging.

Thanks to some ducking compressors and a library created by Colin Hart, I was able to create some awesome sound effects for the show.

Here is a sample of his field work:

Yamaha R1 Blog Demo by Colin Hart

I really appreciate the lengths that Colin Hart went to in order to record a consistently high quality soundset. I’m really impressed with his effort and grateful for his contribution to this show.

For the record, I wouldn’t have the nerve to do this, I would worry too much:

We had 2 Sanken Cubs on the bike. One up front next to the top of the gas tank, and the other next to the license plate. Next, we had a Shure SM57 attached next to the other side of the license plate, facing down towards the exhaust. Last, we had a Neumann KMR81i attached next to the swing arm, facing back towards the exhaust.

[box]J.S. Epperson is the sound designer for The Gene Pool. He has previously created sound and voice over work for Arouet, Arts West, Redwood Theatre and Theatre 9/12. You can read a clever paragraph or two about Epperson on the Cast and Crew page or you can visit his website. Read some fabulously nerdy blog posts about Arouet sound design.[/box]

Music and Sound Design of “Frankie and Johnny”

The sound design requirements for a show like Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune are minimal. Because Frankie and Johnny are listening to the radio, the script calls for specific musical selections to be played throughout the show. I thought it would be fun to extend the “radio” concept into intermission and keep the music flowing, with additional music and intermittent radio announcements that are not called for in the script itself.


Whenever I work on sound for a show, people ask me where they can get the music that I’ve used in the show and during intermission. I would like to think that this is about my meticulous taste and musical skills, but in reality I think I’m just benefiting from a captive audience that likes the arts. So, in the spirit of sharing, here are some great examples of music that is called for in the script. These links go to Amazon.com, a great resource for classical music MP3s.

Act I Playlist Example

Bach: Goldberg Variations (1981 Digital Recording)
Scriabin: Symphony No. 2
Clair de Lune from Suite bergamasque

Intermission Playlist Example

Edvard Grieg, Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, Op. 46: Morning Mood
Charles-François Gounod, Funeral March of a Marionette
Edvard Grieg, In The Hall Of The Mountain King from Peer Gynt Suite No. 1

Act II Playlist Example

Richard Wagner, Ride Of The Valkyries from Die Walkure
Cesar Frank, Sonata in A Major
Dmitry Shostakovich, String Qiartet #2

J.S. Epperson is the sound designer for Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune. He has previously created sound for Arts West, Redwood Theatre and Theatre 9/12. You can read a clever paragraph or two about Epperson on the Cast and Crew page or you can visit his website.