Brad Pitt to Reopen Legendary Recording Studio on His French Vineyard Grounds

The Oscar-winning actor/producer is adding another job title to his already extensive résumé: Recording Studio Executive

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Photo: helene hadjiyaianni

Brad Pitt is taking on a new role.

Already a successful winegrower, the Oscar-winning actor/producer, 57, is adding another job title to his already extensive résumé: Recording Studio Executive.

And not just any studio, but a legendary one which has played its part in dozens of classic recordings including Pink Floyd's The Wall and WHAM's "Careless Whisper."

This summer, after a complete makeover and modernization, Pitt will reopen the doors of the celebrated recording studio at Chateau Miraval, his estate in the South of France.

First built in 1977 by then-property owner French jazz pianist Jacques Loussier, the pioneering state-of-the-art facility Miraval facility was ahead of its time, housing the first solid-state mixing board in France. Built to reproduce the sound Loussier heard in concert hall performances, the large secluded facility also contained a separate drum chamber. Studio Miraval hosted sessions for Sade's "Sweetest Taboo," for Sting, AC/DC, The Cure, The Cranberries, Courtney Love, Elton John and more.

After Loussier, who died in 2019, ceded the property to American winegrower Tom Bove, recording activities at Studio Miraval continued sporadically, ending around two decades ago. The facility, including its in-house instruments, synthesizers and gear were available but dormant when Pitt and then partner Angelina Jolie came upon the 1200-acre Miraval vineyard in 2008.

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With Emmy-winning producer Damien Quintard onboard to help plan the transformation and oversee operations, the now re-dubbed Miraval Studios is expected to host its first sessions as early as June.

The first-in-the-door musicians will find a remade facility incorporating the latest available recording and film industry technology which also carefully retains the sound quality past acts appreciated.

Quintard, a veteran French musician and producer who has worked with Brian Eno, Arca and Parcels, met Pitt in Paris. "We immediately clicked," the 30-year-old recalls. "It was an intense moment where we just talked and talked about sound. I was amazed at how sensitive and precise he was in his analysis of music."

The pair signed a joint venture partnership deal for Miraval Studios earlier this year. (Construction on the site was unaffected by the October sale of Angelina Jolie's share in the $164 million estate to beverage group Tenute del Mondo.)

After a major renovation, Miraval Studios is now centered around a desk designed jointly by Pitt and Quintard with hybrid analog/digital capacities and boasting fully integrated Dolby Atmos systems. There's technology as well to handle pre-mixing for film and television.

According to Quintard, the redesign has also "redefined a remarkable natural reverb so we can record voices or instruments anywhere in the studio." Additional recording booths and a mezzanine overview have been added while the use of natural light is widely employed. And in another nod to modern trends, Miraval Studios plans to offer a steady presence on social media for curious fans.

"It really is a space where you can produce anything from pop and rock, to hip-hop and classical records," Quintard suggests. "The combination of Brad's vision for Miraval and our common passion for taking the time to make simple but beautiful things has resulted in something that is one-of-a-kind."We are so excited for musicians of all types to be a part of what we've created."

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