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Downton Abbey, Elgar docu scoop BAFTA sound awards

Hackenbacker Audio Post Production - which handled audio for ITV1 ratings winner Downton Abbey - was among the victors at the British Academy Television Craft Awards, which took place at The Brewery, London, on 8 May.

Hackenbacker Audio Post Production was among the winners at the British Academy Television Craft Awards, which took place at The Brewery, London, on 8 May, reports David Davies.

The London-based facility picked up the Best Sound Fiction category for its work on ITV’s hugely successful costume drama series, Downton Abbey. In fact, Hackenbacker had two chances to land the prizes, with its work on Channel 4’s Any Human Heart also receiving a nomination.

Nigel Heath, Hackenbacker’s founder and director, commented: “I am absolutely thrilled that Hackenbacker has won this award and I was delighted to accept it on behalf of the whole team, all of whom have played an important part in making Downton Abbey a ‘sound’ success. Costume dramas are not the easiest projects to tackle from an audio point of view because of the need to make them sound almost ‘timeless’. We have to ensure that no modern day noises such as aeroplanes or cars get into the mix and shatter the illusion. We were honoured to be asked to work on the show and we are all very proud of the result.”

Hackenbacker – which fended off competition from the sound teams behind Mad Dogs, The Promise and South Riding – has been commissioned to handle audio for the second series of Downton Abbey, due to screen later this year.

The Best Sound Factual award, meanwhile, was collected by Paul Paragon, Jez Spencer and Mike Hatch for their work on BBC Four documentary Elgar: The Man Behind the Mask. Other programmes nominated in this category include two episodes (‘Jungles’ and ‘Oceans’) of the BBC’s Human Planet, along with Top Gear’s Middle East special.

The Original Music category, meanwhile, brought recognition for Dan Jones, who composed the soundtrack to Any Human Heart. Fellow nominees included Vince Pope (Misfits), David Arnold/Michael Price (Sherlock) and John Lunn (Terry Pratchett’s Going Postal).

A full list of nominees and winners for this year’s Craft Awards can be found at,1081,BA.html