Sound Mixer SiYao Jiang brings on the laughs with new film ‘Bag of Worms’
SiYao Jiang knew he could never spend every day sitting behind a desk. He needs to move around, make each day different from the last, and most importantly, find a way to express his creativity. A production sound mixer, for the Chinese native, is the perfect job for him. He can do audio and recording in a new location almost daily. He can meet new people on every new set and learn something new with every project he takes on.
Jiang has become an industry leading sound mixer with an esteemed career. Known for films like Starf*cker, Apple, Slicker, and more, Jiang has impressed audiences around the world. With his work on high profile commercials like last year’s commercial for Daikin, millions have seen what he is capable of.
“Sound mixing is fun, I get to play around with different mics so I get different tones. It’s also a very challenging job especially when dealing with lav microphones, the placement of the lavs, how to hide a lav, what materials to use on different cloth to eliminate the clothing noise etc., and last but not least, its audio,” said Jiang.
Last year, Jiang worked on the captivating comedy Bag of Worms. Directed by Grey’s Anatomy’s Grace Rowe, Bag of Worms tells the story of a Halloween party that turns south when the issue of race comes up amongst friends.
“I like the story because it’s a comedy, it has a lot of humor in it which makes people laugh, also it teaches something at the end of the story,” said Jiang.
With his tremendous reputation, Jiang was recommended to work on Bag of Worms by fellow sound mixer Jon Bosemen. He was happy to be a part of the comedy, knowing that a set of that genre is always a fun and relaxing environment.
Working on Bag of Worms was one of Jiang’s favorite ever working experiences. He had a boom operator working alongside him, making his job much easier. There were 11 actors, but they only had three lavs available, which made recording a lot more difficult, but thanks to his amazing boom op, who was able to manage getting most of the audio, Jiang was able to focus on other aspects of sound mixing. When it came to who to lav, Jiang and his boom op discussed which scene to lav who, so that way even if the op wasn’t able to catch the sound, the lav did, ensuring perfection and saving vast amounts of time and money during post-production.
Jiang’s favorite part of the experience was the team he worked with. Not only did he form a great partnership with his boom operator, he worked closely with Rowe, who would always ask his opinion on how to get the best sound before a take. Jiang found this refreshing, as many directors think about sound during post-production, which can be very time consuming.
The crew and the environment were very relaxed, and the collaboration amongst the team ensured success for the film.
“It feels amazing that the film has done so well. The amount of work that we all put in to make Bag of Worms and knowing the project comes out successful feels blessed,” Jiang concluded.
Written by Annabelle Lee
Published Feb. 16, 2019