music morsels fiorenza December 2006 

INDUSTRY PROFILE - Music Supervisor Tony Von Pervieux

by Mark E. Waterbury

There was only average musical exposure in Tony Von Pervieux’s upbringing, not enough to make an impression on him right away. Born in Hanover, Pennsylvania before moving to Miami at a young age, Tony mainly discovered whatever his siblings were listening to. “I became interested in music when I went to college,” Tony recalls. “I went to a few concerts before that and had a good time, but nothing really fascinated me about it enough to think about getting into the music business. I actually had greater passions for movies and television.” When he attended the University of Central Florida in Orlando pursuing a bachelor of arts degree, Tony was thinking of becoming a sports agent. He began going out more to investigate the local music scene and that is when the music bug first bit him. He made a friend who together with Tony decided to develop a talent organization at his university. The organization which was sanctioned by the university was an information center for students interested in various aspects of the arts. “We had all these different divisions like music, and film acting and directing, where we brought in people from the industries who taught the students how to get their foot in the door and experience what the businesses were like. We were new at it, too, so we were learning as we went and we made a lot of connections with the professionals as well. The cool thing was we met quite a few people and actually acted like their agents by helping them secure work. It was really a great experience.”

By the time Tony obtained his degree, he abandoned the idea of becoming a sports agent. Music and entertainment in general was flowing in his veins now, and he sought employment in the entertainment capital of southern California. While visiting a friend there in the summer of 2000, Tony managed to get two job interviews in the music industry right away; one with Brillstein and Grey, the other one with Aaron Walton Entertainment. “I ended up getting offered both jobs, but I took the less corporate route with Walton Entertainment. I felt that suited me and would be better for me, and since I took that route I haven’t looked back.” Aaron Walton Entertainment was a management company working with eight bands, including Nobody’s Angel on Hollywood Records, and Dakota Moon, whose frontman Ty Taylor would go on to be a finalist on “Rock Star INXS.” Tony primarily assisted in all aspects of the management of the acts. “We dabbled slightly in the entertaining marketing side as well. Working there helped me to build more relationships and gain a broader knowledge of the inner workings of the music industry.”

Tony had worked for Walton Entertainment for two and a half years when a friend told him that music supervisor Dawn Soler was looking for an assistant at her company Working Music.  “It was kind of thrown in my lap, and like most people who haven’t experienced it, I didn’t know what a music supervisor does. Someone told me it was just placing music in film and TV, and I thought that seemed like an interesting job, which it is of course. I decided to move on and see what happened.” Tony joined Working Music, which was started in the late 90’s by Dawn Soler after her employer at the time Polygram went under. At first becoming Dawn’s assistant, and later becoming a full fledged music supervisor himself, Tony learned the ropes as he went working on such movies as “Sweet Home Alabama,” “Catwoman,” “Material Girls” and “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.” “Dawn was absolutely my mentor for the entire career run with this. She has been amazing and it is great to have a mentor that can be there when you need them, and you can learn from.”

Currently, Tony is working in cooperation with Frankie Pine at Whirly Girl on the television show “Ugly Betty,” and thoroughly enjoying his career path. “Music supervision has really grown on me. This is a very cool industry and there is a lot to learn and do, and it is fun, It is tough as well and a lot of work like negotiations and dealing with people you don’t always want to deal with. But after the work is done and you put out a great soundtrack, it is really cool.” Beyond his work on “Ugly Betty,” there may be a cloud of uncertainty because Dawn Soler has recently accepted a position as the head of the music department at Touchstone Television. Tony is considering starting his own company and keeping his options open in all directions, but has found a career he has passion for and wants to stick with it. “I don’t leave any options out, but I am most likely going to stick with this industry because it is something I have been part of and dedicated most of my career to. I want to continue with it and stay more on the creative side if possible. If I start my own company, that will be exciting for me because that is the next step. I have been working under someone for a while and slowly getting more music supervising credits, and am learning enough about the business where I feel confident I can do it on my own now. It is a different beast because I am going to have to get the jobs and nothing is guaranteed -- paychecks are never guaranteed. It is kind of scary, but it is something I have to do eventually, so now is the time to do it. I am definitely looking forward to it.”


Tony Von Pervieux’s advice for musicians: “Keep producing good music and trying to get it out there to everybody, because you never know who may be able to get it into something. Assistants do matter, so don’t overlook them and go straight to the music supervisor, because sometimes the assistants are the ones who will listen to your music. They’re the ones who tell the music supervisors, 'hey, listen to this', because the music supervisors usually don’t have time to listen to everything. Just keep making music, keep getting it out there, and eventually you could get something placed.”
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