What do Music Supervisors do?Music Supervisors act as mediators between production teams and composers and their teams, which may include orchestrators, engineers, copyists, musician's contractors, etc. They also suggest ideas, and research and obtain rights to source music for films. Music Supervisors oversee spotting sessions (deciding on where the director wants music, and why), recruit and contract musicians, book recording studios and attend sessions, ensuring that delivery requirements are fulfilled. If the music is to be published, they ensure that it is registered properly, and that cue sheets are dispatched. Music Supervisors are usually employed at the post production stage, but they are occasionally required earlier in the production process, e.g., to source tracks for on camera dancing, or to organize an on camera concert, involving musicians and singers miming to pre-recorded tracks. In this case, music must be arranged, pre-recorded versions must be produced for playback during mimed performances, and clearances and licenses must be acquired. Music Supervisors organize and arrange the budgets for music requirements, liaise with the set designer, the sound team, and the playback operator, and ensure that the sound team has the pre-record in the correct format. They also check synchronization issues during on camera performances.
Music Supervisors negotiate deal points and contracts, prepare budgets, and attend scheduling meetings and spotting sessions. They oversee the compositional process, ensuring that the required music is being written, listened to, and reported upon. They organize music orchestration and copying. When larger sessions are required, e.g., involving an orchestra, they liaise with the musician's contractor about rates, line up, and invoicing. They also check engineer and studio availability and, when necessary, hire a conductor. When organizing source music, Music Supervisors prepare source music schedules, and keep everyone informed and updated, e.g., about deviations from allocated budgets. Music Supervisors check licenses, and forward them to the production company, highlighting any possible issues, and act as the liaison between the record companies, the publishers, and the production company. They produce the music cue sheet for final delivery, ensuring that the duration of the music used conforms to the terms of the negotiated contract.
Job description sources include (but are not limited to) imdb.com, skillset.org and wikipedia.