Originally he thought he’d be a professional jazz musician, and then explored an education in pharmacy with hopes of graduate studies in medicine, but Stephen Barden eventually found himself in film school where the magic of putting sound to picture was revealed. From that point, Barden knew where his career path would lay.
In 1994, Barden joined Sound Dogs in Toronto as an assistant dialogue editor and went on to become a supervising sound editor, sound designer and vice president of the company.
As a first-call sound supervisor in Canada and the United States, Barden has worked on such films as Cube, Requiem For A Dream, The Aristocrats, The Fountain, Pompeii and the Resident Evil franchise including the forthcoming Resident Evil: The Final Chapter. He has also contributed to television series including Due South, Durham County, Beauty and the Beast, Departures, Descending and The Colony and is very proud to remain active in the documentary and independent film community in Toronto, recently completing John Kastner’s Life With Murder, NCR: Not Criminally Responsible and Out of Mind, Out of Sight: Inside the Brockville Psych as well as Shelly Saywell’s Low Down Tracks. He is a multiple Genie, Gemini and M.P.S.E. Golden Reel award winner and nominee. In 2013 and 2014, he has been nominated for three awards in the sound categories of the Canadian Screen Awards (Canadian Academy Awards), winning in 2014 for The Mortal Instruments and 2015 for Pompeii.
Barden’s career has taken him to the major centers of film production in North America where he feels at home in studios in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, New York and Los Angeles. He’s also worked recording, editing and mixing jobs in China, Africa, France and the UK.
Barden studied film at Sheridan College in Oakville, Ontario, Canada and he returned there in the early 2000’s as a part-time faculty member teaching sound and sound design. He has remained active at Sheridan since then. Barden holds a masters degree in Creative and Media Education from Bournemouth University in England and is a member of the Directors Guild of Canada, the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television and the Motion Picture Sound Editors guild. He considers himself to be very lucky to have been invited to speak at Harvard University, University of Chichester, UCLA and Columbia University for the CILECT North America Post-Production Symposium.
Barden is the Acting Coordinator of the MASSIVE program, Music Applied to Stage, Screen and Interactive Visual Environments.
A huge fan of film, basketball and of all types of music, his favourite sounds are the squeak of sneakers on a gym floor, a Harmon-muted trumpet and children playing in a schoolyard. He currently lives with his family in Burlington, Ontario.