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Student Testimonials

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Warrick Percy

My journey in the music industry began as a musician, fuelled by a passion for creating and performing music.

However, after years of performing, I found myself delving deeper, questioning how royalties are paid to artists/songwriters, the role of performing rights organizations, and the responsibilities of music publishers. 

Seeking answers, I turned to ASE.

ASE not only provided me with a solid foundation in both the technical and business sides of the industry but also introduced me to the legendary Nick Matzukis. 

Nick became my mentor, and I credit him for a large portion of my success to date. My time at ASE was deeply enriching, offering invaluable knowledge, hands-on experience, and the direct guidance of industry experts.

A significant highlight of my journey was the opportunity to intern with Nick for the better part of my time at ASE. Under his mentorship, I acquired insights and knowledge that have been instrumental in my career development. 

He exposed me to the deeper workings of the music business, providing the space and opportunity to put all the theoretical knowledge learnt at ASE into practical application. 

I'm profoundly grateful for the support and guidance I received during my time with him.
Upon graduating from ASE, I began a role at Universal Music Publishing. Universal deepened my passion for songwriters and music publishing, allowing me to understand how songs are created, published, promoted, and ultimately monetized. 

This passion continued as I moved to the role of Head of Licensing and Business Development at the mechanical rights' organization, CAPASSO.

During my time at CAPASSO, I helped create a new, joint digital licensing structure between CAPASSO and the performing rights organization, SAMRO. I led negotiations for the first ever deals in South Africa with major platforms like Spotify, Youtube, Apple Music, Deezer, and Facebook (now Meta). 

Toward the end of my tenure at CAPASSO, I helped establish "The African Licensing Hub," a first-of-its-kind digital licensing hub facilitating digital licensing for over 24 countries and CMOs across the African continent.

Finally, my career took me to London to work for Facebook (now Meta), where I’ve helped lead international music publishing deals and strategy. I contributed to the global expansion of Meta's music products, such as Facebook and Instagram Reels, to over 200 territories worldwide. 

Today, my role is transitioning into a deeper focus on product business development at Meta, as I seek new avenues of growth and learning.

The time I spent at ASE was invaluable, and the education, mentorship, and connections I gained there have been pivotal in shaping my career. 

I'm deeply grateful to ASE and, especially, Nick Matzukis for the unwavering support and guidance that has helped define my career path. 

Thank you for helping me turn my passion into a now fulfilling career.

Mzi Patrick Kaka

It probably all started when I saw sitting before George Hattingh Snr. After having failed my golden test with Jan Van Zyl on Open Day. 

At this point I had already accepted that Sound Engineering studies would feature in my life. Then all of that changed very quickly once a sat before George Hatting Snr. 

And I shared my vision with him. He told me we could work on my less than flattering
attributes and that as per the psychometric assessment, I’m a balanced guy and balanced usually fair
off quite well at A.S.E. The Sound Engineering dream had been resurrected and, in some ways, so
had I.

And that was how I ended the year 2006, come 2007, my journey at A.S.E began and I spent many of
my earliest days in wide eyed fascination. At times almost overwhelmed with anxiety but for the
most part – very inspired and hopeful; my time at A.S.E was a formative stage where I learned a lot,
not only about Sound Engineering concepts and their application, but also about myself. This could
be partly responsible for the bets I took on myself which saw me step into the radio industry at the
close of my first year at a community station called 1484AM Radio Today and then move into
commercial radio at Metro FM less than a year later; n large part thanks to A.S.E’s ProTools focussed
curriculum. There’s obviously a lot more to the story than I’m divulging but I will spare you the
details for brevity’s – find me if you want the full story.

My time at Metro FM as a technical producer was in some ways everything I had dreamed of and
more and in some ways the stuff some of my worst nightmares are made of. The opportunity was a
once in a lifetime and absolutely amazing. On the other hand, it felt like I just wasn’t built for the
environment I was subjected to. With my time coming to an abrupt end, I left radio bitter and
disillusioned and secretly vowing to never return. This resulted in an 8-year career limbo that saw
me try my hand at youth development; business ventures and eventually business and technical
support as a call centre agent.

After continuous nudging from my Dad to give radio another go, I eventually did so on condition that
this time I would take a shot at presenting. The break happened in 2018 with community station Hot
919 and there has been no looking back since. The re-entrance into radio also positioned me to take
an opportunity to realise a log forgotten dream of mine – to lecture at A.S.E.

Being in the position I am in today; I can only be filled with gratitude and optimism. Gratitude for the
past that seemed to be pointless at times but has led me back to exactly where I’m supposed to be
as well as gratitude for the present and optimism for the future on both radio and lecturing fronts.
If we are yet to me, my name is Mzimkulu Patrick Kaka, you can call me Mzi – not sir, please. I am so
honoured to be afforded the privilege of being part of your journey at A.S.E in whatever shape or
form that might be realised.

Diandra van Staden

"I studied at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) and achieved Diploma’s in Live Reinforcement and Broadcast in 2008.

As my interest is in Broadcast and Live events, ASE gave me the both practical and theoretical expertise to navigate this niche industry. I have freelanced for many businesses, international festivals, World Cups and now work for the National Broadcaster (SABC).”

Michael John Botha

After leaving The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) in 2007, I started my career in the dubbing bay, digitizing and archiving audio from various mediums including vinyl, ADAT tape, etc. I then moved to recording Foleys on feature films and that is where my Pro Tools skills really came in handy.

I then tried my hand at recording automated dialogue replacement (ADR) which became a passion of mine. That led to me becoming a dialogue editor, and now I am a final mix engineer on both features and commercials. I still focus heavily on the dialogue side of the edit process and have recorded ADR for productions such as Game Of Thrones, Tomb Raider, West World, Alien, Black Sails and Hannibal, to name but a few.

I have won 2 Emmys for my work on Black Sails and have recently been nominated for a CAS award for West World. In 2015 I was invited to do the final mix for a feature called Momentum at Technicolor at Paramount Pictures in Los Angeles. ASE taught me all the skills I needed to get to where I am today, and with the addition of my Pro Tools qualification, I was a step ahead of the rest.”

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Dulane McCabe

Currently working as the Sound engineer, video editor and composer for WTG Media House.

I was a student at ASE from 2019 to 2022.

The journey at ASE was not easy as expected. It required hard work and dedication to stick it
through to the end.

I am grateful for the knowledge I have gained from ASE, more specifically my elective decisions.

Choosing Post production and Broadcasting was a calculated decision because I knew where I
wanted to be in the future and based on where the industry was going, I chose to do both electives.

This was not easy at all, I had to work twice as hard as the normal ASE student, stay ahead in classes
and projects constantly and make sure to have time to socialise and build connections with people
at ASE.

All I can say is this was really worth the effort, time, dedication and hardships because currently at
WTG Media house I am using knowledge gained from both electives daily.

I have impressed my superiors with my delivery times, workflow, attitude and most importantly my
professional etiquette which is an important principle ASE taught me as well.

So far my journey has been fruitful as I am using the knowledge gained from ASE everyday, I am
building connections on the industry and my network is growing larger and larger everyday and
slowly more people are beginning to know my name In the industry not only as a sound engineer,
but as a production assistant, video editor, podcast creator and music composer.

ASE gave me the opportunity to see the door and equipped me with the knowledge to open the
door and then prepared me to walk through that door into the industry.
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Kgotso Motaung

“Never in my life did I think I would turn a bedroom hobby into one of my deepest passions and eventually into a prosperous career. 

It’s all because of these simple words that I heard in 2014 on my first day at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) – “It’s not about being at the right place at the right time. It’s about being at the right place all the time.”

ASE is the perfect place to achieve exactly that. There’s no two ways about it. Without ASE I would never have met the people who helped boost my journey as a sound engineer. I’m still having a difficult time believing how far I’ve come in such a short time.

From mixing garden parties for friend’s bands to manning the monitor console for some of the biggest international acts to come to South Africa. Yeah… It all started with a casual stroll through the doors of the SABC towards The Academy Of Sound Engineering.”

Aleksandar Jankovic

"My name is Al Funk, I am a Musician, Composer, Sound Engineer and Music Producer. I enrolled for the Diploma course at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) in 2008. 

During my time at ASE, I was fortunate enough to have had many opportunities to gain working experience with an upcoming local Progressive Rock band Isochronous (now ISO), who are close friends of mine.

Although my focus was Music Production, I toured the country with the band as their FOH Engineer, mixing notable major music festivals such as OppiKoppi, InniBos and Ramfest.

The best advice I can give to current and future ASE students is to really make the most of your time at ASE. Try to create as many opportunities as possible for yourself to gain hands on experience. If you are booking studio time only to complete projects, you are wasting precious opportunities and under utilising the phenomenal facilities at your disposal.”

Sean Ashmole

"The Academy of Sound Engineering has delivered on its promises of assisting students to find their place in the audio industry time and time again for me.

I was blessed to be part of the intern program that allowed me to save my parents money on my fees in exchange for nothing more than spending more time with my lectures and adding significant work experience to my CV.

During my second year of college I had already built my CV up to a point that I was able to get regular freelance work with 3 of the major audio companies in the city. This is not counting the numerous projects that my lectures continued to invite us to assist on where I was meeting famous American producers and the biggest names in the South African industry. My network was growing and I was earning so well that I could afford to invest in my own recording gear by the end of my second year.

In my third year, before I had graduated I was offered a full time position as the head engineer and warehouse manager of over R16 million worth of gear and managing 15 separate crews around the country. This was before I even had my diploma in hand.

I graduated as the top student in my major, Live Sound Reinforcement, and in the practical projects of my year. This had been my goal from the first day at ASE and I was rewarded not only with a stamp of approval that opens doors every day in the industry but with numerous sponsored prizes in the form of gear and my very own PA system.

That should be the end of the story right? Nope… when I call on old mentors from ASE they still return my calls and give me advice. When I contacted the directors directly they moved mountains and offered their personal network for me to find my dream jobs. Even years after my graduation ASE has helped me to tick off more and more off my bucket list of gigs and career goals.

These are educators that honestly have the system down to a fine art. All you have to do is show up and be willing to work.”

Chad Snell

"I started at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) in 2007 as a hopeful and aspiring student hungry for knowledge and a passion for all things Audio. During my time at ASE, I met many amazing people, many who are my closest friends still today.

After graduating, I started my career as an assistant final mixer at ‘Binnelanders’, I then worked on ‘The Wild’ where was given the opportunity to step into the final mix position. After that I did a lot of freelance work developing my skill set on different formats; short-form, radio as well as different long-form TV shows. I was then offered a position at ‘SCANDAL!’ where I’m currently still doing the final mixing as well as laying mood music.

I do some projects on the side like the documentary on the life of Johann Botha called ‘Ons Botha’ for which I was nominated for a SAFTA award in ‘Best Achievement in Sound Design – Documentary Feature’ on 8 February 2019.

I’m proud to be ASE Alumni, if it wasn’t for the skills I learnt and the connections made there, I doubt I would be where I am today. It hasn’t always been easy, but it’s always been worth it!”


Renaldo Marais

“In 2011 I started my career at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) and only finished in 2015, because of various course changes.

I spent 5 years at the Academy and it was some of the best times of my life. In this time I did live sound reinforcement, music production, and broadcasting.

While I was working I did quite a bit of work for Word of Life church in Boksburg. I mixed FOH and monitors, and sometimes did broadcast mixes for their live feeds to social media platforms.

I now work at Aluglass Bautech, where we do acoustic mobile partitions, acoustic doors and many other products. While studying at ASE I developed a passion for acoustics, and the design thereof. ASE has really been a big stepping stone in my career and I would like to thank them for providing a world class education system for sound engineers.”


Motlalepule Isaack Mofokeng

“My name is Motlalepule Isaack Mofokeng, I am a documentary Filmmaker based in Johannesburg, I started film-making in 2014 as production assistant on commercial sets.

In 2016 I was awarded a bursary by NFVF to study television and screen media at Academy of Television and Screen Arts (ATV) which is a division of Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE).

While studying I got a job shadowing position at SABC news. I completed my qualification in 2018, whereby I got a job to work as an assistant executive producer for Advertiser’s Funded Project (AFP) for a television network, that helped me put all the education I got at ATV into practice.

Two years later I started a production company ‘MOB P Creatives‘ with my partner. Our company is mainly a creative collective whereby we allow all types of creatives to have a feel at home experience. As a content producer, MOB P Creatives house and collaborate with different filmmakers, fine artists, photographers, illustrators, musicians and journalists. MOB P creatives have been involved in music videos, short documentaries and journalism projects.

Our biggest highlight so far is our short documentary titled ‘Coal for Living’ that has been officially selected in more than three film festivals. We were also semi finalists in the London International Motion Picture Awards. Later this year we will be screening in Denmark at the Polar Bear International Film Festival.

I am very grateful to ASE and ATV for the opportunity to study further. Their television and screen media course is a well designed program for people who are already in the film and television space and those who wish to enter the industry, as it has hands-on lectures who are very good in their own field. What I believe helped me most by studying at ATV is the people and the environment which is very inclinched in the industry.”

Masego Modisoatsile

"I am an aspiring editor from Mafikeng with an interest in photography and cinematography. I am generally open-minded and enjoy learning new things while exploring my interests and growing in whichever avenues I pursue. I’m a 2nd year in the Film and Television course at the moment (2019).”

ASE – Congratulations to Masego on being accepted into the Cannes Filmmaking program on merit, we are very proud of you!

“I’m really thankful to Mr Hattingh and the The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) staff for the amount of support and assistance they have given me throughout this; my lecturers for backing me up and the excitement they displayed. And I would also like to thank Elsa Glenn for the enthusiasm she carried before this even started; her unwavering support and dedication to helping me through everything this journey has thrown my way; for always believing in me and being on my side. Her contribution was enormous!”

Wiaan van der Westhuizen

"I completed my Diploma in Sound Engineering at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) at the end of 2013 specialising in Broadcasting. I then went on to complete my Masters in Music Production through Berklee College of Music, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

My time at ASE will always be treasured, between my fellow students and the lecturers, the impact it had on my career was massive. I remember George 1v1 as if we learnt it yesterday sitting in V1A and I apply it almost on a daily basis. To be lectured by some of South Africa’s top engineers I regarded as a priceless experience and tried to soak up as much knowledge as humanly possible, before moving onto my own ventures.

Fast forward a couple of years, I now run own successful audio post production recording studio based in Northcliff, Johannesburg, Back Beat Productions. I’ve done work for ABSA, Chicken Licken, Vodacom, TED Talks, Standard Bank, USN, and VW to name but a few. All thanks to ASE!”

Zwelakhe Masemola

“I’ve had the privilege of working on a lot of projects which involved me mixing for the likes of South Africa’s greatest musicians; Amanda Black, Kelly Khumalo, Lady Zamar and the late Oliver Mutukudzi.

All this happened after enrolling at The Academy of Sound Engineering (ASE) in 2014 and getting the foundation and guidance to make it to where I am now. Being around lecturers like Anderson ‘Mickey’ Mabitsela and Cristo Hattingh has helped me to operate with confidence and start my own company – iZwelakhe Productions.”

Vaughan Philips

“In 2007, The Academy of Sound Engineering‘s (ASE) part-time course gave me a solid foundation for my journey as a multi-award winning audio professional. It covered the essential core fundamentals of audio and enabled me to elevate my studio career to new heights.

I made life-long connections and friendships with fellow professionals who attended the course with me. If you are serious about a career in audio I would highly recommend signing up without delay!”

Academy of Sound Engineering (PTY) Ltd is registered as a private higher education institution in terms of section 54(1)(c) of the Higher Education Act, 1997 (Act No. 101 of 1997) and Regulation 16(4)(a) of the Regulations for the Registration of Private Higher Education Institutions, 2002, to offer its registered programmes at the following sites of delivery: A. Johannesburg; B. Cape Town.
Academy of Sound Engineering (Pty) Ltd is registered to offer the following programmes: (1) Higher Certificate in Audio Technology (A, B) (2) Higher Certificate in Television and Screen Media (A) (3) Diploma in Sound Engineering (A) (4) Diploma in Audio Technology (A, B) (5) Diploma in Television and Screen Media (A) (6) Bachelor of Science in Sound Engineering Technology (A, B)
Registration certificate No.2009/HE07/011
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