Built in 1920, Kaufman Astoria Studios (KAS) was a mecca for silent film production. From the advent of sound to the digital revolution, it has continued to prosper. It enjoys a reputation as one of New York's premiere video and film production centers, boasting six stagesÑincluding the largest one east of Los AngelesÑand KAS Lighting, a lighting and grip company. Now it adds KAS Music & Sound, an audio recording and post-production studio, to its fold.
KAS Music & Sound was created when KAS acquired the assets of Master Sound, which operated from inside the complex since 1985. Joe Castellon has been named executive creative director of the studio, overseeing the day-to-day operations. Expecting to handle not only in-house work from the shows and commercials produced at the studio, KAS is looking to attract outside clients as well.
Castellon brings to KAS Music & Sound over three decades of recording industry experience, including his integral involvement in three 2002 Grammy-nominated albums: Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for Betty Buckley's Stars And The Moon: Live At The Donmar; Best Compilation Soundtrack Album for Moulin Rouge; and Best Musical Album for Children for Elmo And The Orchestra. An arranger and producer in his own right, he has worked closely with an array of artists; everyone from *NSYNC to Placido Domingo; the US Air Force Band to symphonic pop orchestras in San Diego, Houston, Dallas, and Los Angeles; and The Tonight Show orchestra.
"The creation of KAS Music & Sound underscores our ongoing commitment to providing the absolute best environment for our entertainment industry clients," said President of KAS Hal G. Rosenbluth. "Joe has the finest reputation in the business and his vision for KAS' future will be an enormous asset in the months ahead." According to Castellon, KAS Music & Sound will offer state-of-the-art equipment and services including digital (both tape and hard disk) and analog multitrack recording, a new MIDI room, and personal mixable cue systems. And something Castellon feels will make the facility unique in New York is that a full time staff will be available for composition, arranging, orchestration, film scoring, and full music preparation services.
"I am thrilled to be part of this premiere facility," he said, "one that takes great pride in offering our clients a completely dedicated staff whose only goal is to create an incomparable audio product. The acoustical integrity of our studios is in a class unto itself and needless to say, the results are consistently spectacular."
With one of the last large live rooms in New York, KAS Music & Sound features unique acoustical properties, with space to accommodate 65 orchestra pieces as well as large isolation booths. Programs coming out of KAS will certainly have moved beyond the silent era.
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