The Sound of Black Swan

Darren Aronofsky’s (Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler) “Black Swan” is a ballet thriller that follows Nina (Natalie Portman) as she is given the lead role in Swan Lake.

As Nina sinks deeper and deeper into her role as the Black Swan, her life starts to spin out of control.

Aronofsky’s long time sound collaborator, Craig Henighan, (sound designer, supervising sound editor, sound re-recording mixer) discusses the detailed approach for crafting the sound for this cinematic thriller.


A New York City ballet company is producing Swan Lake, and director Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel) decides to replace prima ballerina Beth MacIntyre (Winona Ryder) and is in the process of casting for the lead role of the Swan Queen. Dancer Nina (Natalie Portman) lives with her overbearing mother and former ballerina Erica (Barbara Hershey), who puts pressure on her daughter to succeed where her career failed. Nina finds competition in new dancer Lily (Kunis) and struggles with the stress by apparently mutilating herself. Swan Lake requires a ballerina who can play the innocent White Swan, which fits Nina, and the sensual Black Swan, which fits Lily, but Nina gets the part after she violently rebuffs the sexual advances of Leroy. The dancers' rivalry changes into a bizarre friendship as the show's debut approaches, and Nina begins being overtaken by dark revenge fantasies against Lily and starts to lose her grip on reality.

Sound Credits

Coll Anderson Sfx Recordist
Steve Baine Foley Artist
Krissopher Chevannes Adr Recordist (As Kris Chevannes)
Brian Emrich Sound Designer
Nelson Ferreira Sfx Recordist
Dror Gescheit Recordist (As Drew Gescheit)
Anguibe Guindo Boom Person
Gina Gyles Foley Assistant (As Gina Wark)
Jonathan E. Hatton Theatrical House Sound
Craig Henighan Sound Designer
Craig Henighan Sound Re Recording Mixer
Craig Henighan Supervising Sound Editor
Harry Higgins Recordist
Ken Ishii Production Sound Mixer: C As
Bobby Johanson Adr Mixer
Avi Laniado Sound Mix Engineer
Wayne Lemmer Sound Effects Editor
Joe Origlieri Cable Person
Peter Persaud Foley Recordist
Jill Purdy Supervising Adr Editor
Jill Purdy Supervising Dialogue Editor
Seth Tallman Additional Boom Person
Dominick Tavella Sound Re Recording Mixer
Sean Byrne Post Production Sound (Uncredited)
Alfonso Calvo Dubbing Re Recording Mixer (Uncredited)
Alan Freedman Adr Mixer (Uncredited)
Peter Gleaves Adr Mixer (Uncredited)
John Soukup Sound Transfer (Uncredited)
Andy Stallabrass Adr Recordist (Uncredited)