Updated: Nov 22, 2020

October 2020

Yvan Ackermann settled his studio in the Normandy region of France.

His passion for music is part of his DNA for the past 4 generations.

His mother, a piano teacher brought young Yvan to appreciate music from the classical repertoire while his father drove him to listen to jazz.

Surrounded by music, Yvan enrolled in a school for performing arts, playing the piano, and developing an interest in percussion and drums. He attended the National Conservatory of music from Lyon.

Yvan worked with prestigious organizations while studying, such as the Lyon’ Opera and the National Orchestra of Lyon as a percussionist. At the end of the 1980s, Yvan was the drummer of French pop/jazz band "l'Affaire Louis Trio".

It however may never have happened, When Yvan was 12 years old, during a school representation on stage, he was supposed to blow into a flute to imitate the sound of a bird. He did but the sound did not come out. That may have scared some to play live ever again but not Yvan, most of his career has been on stage.

Step by step, Yvan made percussion and drums his specialty, recording and touring the world over.

In parallel, His interest for the movie industry triggered the beginning of his career as a composer for media which is his main occupation now.

When starting a project, Yvan’s creative process is to empty his mind of all potential interferences and let the improvisation flow, recording all ideas then sorting them to fine tune what will be his score.

Yvan writes music every day, regardless of the style or mood or whether it is commissioned. This is his way of keeping his ideas sharp.

The first conversation Yvan has with a Director is not a conversation, Yvan asks the Director to tell him the story with as many emotions and as much vision as possible. He wants to be transported into the story, to be part of it. When Yvan gets the feel for the story, all conversations and directions are possible.

If rough cuts are available, Yvan will see them but more often than none, a well understood storyline is sufficient. Many times, he would rather work without seeing the cuts to enlarge his inspiration then edit the music to better fit the images. Ultimately, the most important factor between a Director and a composer is trust.

For Yvan, the most challenging part of scoring an original piece is not technical but rather mental. The role of a composer is essential and understanding the responsibility is an added pressure. You may compose several music pieces fitting very well the same scene and have as many different perceptions from the audience for the same exact scene. Choosing the right piece artistically becomes the challenge, hence the trust relationship with the Director.

The piece of music that keeps on inspiring Yvan is “La Valse” from Maurice Ravel, for its wonder of orchestration and its modernism, composed in 1919 while Europe was being rebuilt after the first World War. His score of reference, while there are so many, is Schindler’s list from John Williams, which is a reference for many other composers. Other important pieces are Sakamoto’s “The Revenant”, and Pierre Adenot composition of “Beauty and the Beast”.

Outside of music for media, Yvan’s influences are very divers, going from Claude Debussy, creator of the impressionist style of contemporary music, to Frank Zappa for his unlimited imagination. Others such as Jaco Pastorius, Vince Mendoza or Pat Metheny are contributing to Yvan’s source of ideas.

Among Yvan’s credits are the music of “Alors j’ai prefere la nuit” film de Mamadou N’Dongo, published by Music Partner, “The Turtle Mountain” from Jean-Michel Fages and various TV shows in Europe.

Yvan does not have a specialty; he is opened to work on any genre but has a special pleasure of works involving orchestral dimension mixing acoustic and electronic.

Yvan’s working set-up is as simple as it gets avoiding technical restrictions. A midi control keyboard from “Nord”, a vintage drum set from “Ayotte”, percussion, microphones to capture the acoustic sounds all connected to a “Focusrite” audio card. Monitors + computer using “Logic Pro X” as a platform with “Spitfire” sound bank.

His one dream would be to have more space and fit a grand piano next to his drum set, inviting chamber music string ensemble to play and record.

Yvan does his own mixing and mastering, from time to time, on larger projects, he will be assisted by a sound engineer. While Yvan wears the multiple technician hats, he is first and foremost an artist.

He delivers his music in stereo mix with stems.

Yvan has chosen to work with Music Partner first because of his friendship, previous collaboration, and mutual respect with CEO Philippe Falliex. Then, seduced by the innovative model and the partner-oriented policy, lastly, the pleasure to be with people you enjoy working with.

Samples of Yvan Ackermann’s music are available here