7 State of the Art Media Rooms Any Producer Would Drool Over

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The motion-capture studio at The Banff Centre

The Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Building is Banff Centre's media headquarters. It houses a full production house capable of creating professional content for a variety of platforms. Few production houses in the world have so many facilities in house, and that’s what makes it such a cool spot. 

Here are some of the highlights:

  1. Luscar Recording Studio: The Avid System 5 console at the centre of this cutting-edge studio allows music to be recorded, mixed and post-produced in both digital and analog format. Acoustics include a bass trap behind the panels and a handcrafted gem of a diffuser. 

  2. The Stairwell: JPL’s two-story emergency exit staircase has been used by many visiting artists as an “Echo Chamber.” It’s a haven for experimenting with sound. Dry sound is played through a speaker, recorded again and then mixed for a uniquely spacious and hollow vibe. The stairwell wasn’t designed for this, but it works really well. Just ask the Juno-nominated Barr Brothers, who recorded part of the song “Please Let Me Let it Go” there. 

  3. Rice Studio: Sitting on rubber blocks, this is an extremely quiet room that can do magical things, a sort of paradise for all kinds of film projects. There’s a full-site all-surrounding green screen with curved walls to eliminate horizon lines, and even green floors, making it the most versatile room in the building. 

  4. Motion Capture Studio: Running on the Organic Motion Open Stage 2 motion-capture system, the marker-less system records data from 18 cameras into 3D. Then, it’s used by animators to model characters more efficiently. The result is more realistic, truer, and more natural animated movement. 

  5. Equipment Room: This is where all the cool gear lives. There are cameras, lights, and just about everything related to them. Think cables, filters, stands, diffusers, gaffer gadgets, dollies, jib weights, batteries, and carts loaded with gear ready to move into the studio across the hall, or out onto a trail in the mountains. 

  6. The Special Effects and Animation Room: The team working in the back corner of JPL have large screens, big windows, digital sketch boards and vast talent. They work on motion graphics, animation and digital media for visual art, film, and television projects. It’s unique for a production house to have its own team of animators in-house. 

  7. Whisper Booth: In the basement podcast and broadcast studio, a big yellow booth that stands out. As it should, since this is where the deep conversations and stories at the heart of Banff Centre Podcasts are recorded. The booth used to be a choral warm-up box located backstage at the Eric Harvie Theatre, where opera singers could get their octaves running smoothly ahead of show time. 
The Whisper Booth in the radio studio

The Whisper Booth in The Banff Centre's radio and podcast-production studio