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PJ Hanke Applies Classical Music To Capital One Spots

New Capital One spots Sovereign?s premiere project (December 08, 2004)

The talents at Sovereign were called on by McCann Erickson/San Francisco to provide original music and sound design for a new Capital One campaign. Founder/Composer PJ Hanke applied his extensive classical music background to the new ?Holiday Shopping spot, and provided a new arrangement of Carl Orffs Carmina Burana ?O Fortuna. Sovereigns Tim Gedemer provided sound design, while Katie Jones served as Executive Producer. The 60- and 30-second versions of the new spot began airing earlier this month, just in time for the holidays.

To view Capital Ones ?Holiday Shopping, go to

The spot opens on a busy mall scene, decked out for Christmas, with lyrical holiday music playing and a couple about to make a gift purchase. ?Tis the season, says the wife as she pulls out a credit card from her wallet. ?Wow, cautions the husband. ?Which card are you using? Those rates are brutal. Just then, the music changes to the dramatic ?Carmina Burana and roguish Vikings break through the malls front door. They storm their way through the lobby, toppling over the Christmas tree and the Santa Clause. They race up the escalator, and tramp up ladders to the second floor to where the couple stands at the cash register. The wife puts down on the counter her new Capital One PrimeLock card, and the brutes are stopped in their tracks. Dejected and disappointed, the Vikings slump away, shields in their hands. The spot ends with the voice-over: ?Introducing the new Capital One PrimeLock card. Its set at prime, so you never have to worry about your interest rate again. One of the Vikings peers angrily into the camera as the Capital One logo appears, and all but growls the credit card companys tag line: ?Whats in your wallet?

Sovereign Composer PJ Hankes creative challenge was to re-arrange the classical piece in order to fit the action. He took the 1930s version of Carl Orffs Carmina Burana into his ?virtual symphony, and calling on his cinematic experience was able to replicate the score to fit picture. ?We utilized technology to sonically realize the original score on a grand scale by replicating the sound of a live ensemble, explains Hanke.

In fact, Hanke was able to replicate all the instruments, playing them idiomatically. He then drew the orchestra and choir through the acoustics of the Vienna Concert Hall. Hanke cautions that this methodology is no substitute for the recording of a live orchestra. However, if time and budget are limited, this solution is an option for ad agency creatives working on tight timelines and within monetary constraints. In the end, Hanke even brought in a film score mixer Damon Tedesco in order to assist with replications of the score being performed on a live sound stage.

About Sovereign
Inspired by the creative vision of Composer PJ Hanke, Sovereign is a select group of individuals who create under the same ideology: to realize conceptually inspiring soundtracks for moving pictures. Providing original music, sound design + music licensing for commercials, film and television, Sovereign features the talents of Composer Hanke, Sound Designer Tim Gedemer and Music Supervisor Alexandra Patsavas, with Katie Jones as Executive Producer and Arianne Braverman as Sales Representative.

Sovereign is located at 1522 B Cloverfield, Santa Monica, Ca 90404 Ph: 310.453.5911 Fax: 310.453.5915

For more information visit


Client: Capital One
Spot: ?Holiday Shopping :60, :30
Airdate: November, 2004

Agency: McCann Erickson/San Francisco
Creative Director: Kevin Moehlenkamp
Art Director: Michel Edens
Copywriter: Dave Ekholm
Producer: Ed Galvez

Production Company: Saville Productions/Los Angeles
Director: Simon West
DP: Peter Menzies

Editorial Company: Filmcore/San Francisco
Editor: Doug Walker

Postproduction Companies: Bobine/Santa Monica & Filmcore/San Francisco
Colorist: Jais Thierry Lamaire/Bobine
Online Editor: Dave Burkhardt/Filmcore

Music + Sound Design Company: Sovereign/Santa Monica, CA
Composer/Arranger: PJ Hanke
Sound Designer: Tim Gedemer
Executive Producer: Katie Jones
Mixer: Damon Tedesco

Licensed track: Carl Orffs Carmina Burana ?O Fortuna


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Related Keywords:PJ Hanke, Capital One, Sovereign, McCann Erickson, Tim Gedemer, Katie Jones, Damon Tedesco, Alexandra Patsavas, Arianne Braverman, Kevin Moehlenkamp, Ed Galvez, Saville Productions, Simon West, Filmcore, Doug Walker, Bobine, Jais Thierry Lamaire, Dave Burkhardt,


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