Roland Bachmann is one of those people who remain seated in the cinema while the credits roll. It’s when the music slows down and most of the viewers are leaving that things really start to get interesting for him. For a number of years now, Roland has been closely acquainted, even friends, with many of the big names in the movie soundtrack business that he now sees scrolling across the screen.
When it comes to working out who worked on the film and which production companies were involved, Roland clearly has a much better idea than most. And it’s no wonder that he is familiar with so many people in the business after working in the field for Sennheiser for 30 years. Roland is always on the go, always working with the customers, and the car is constantly full of wireless systems and the latest test equipment. He is highly valued by customers such as broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk, as well as the numerous theater productions he visits.
Roland always offers a sounding board—and usually a creative solution too. He has never changed. Even back in the GDR era, when he finally succeeded in broadcasting the ARD/ZDF and N3 channels in color to his parents and neighbors using a sophisticated antenna system. A top-secret project, of course, but he did it nevertheless. And to this day, he still loves tinkering, planning, finding solutions.
Often the seeds are planted during discussions with Roland’s customers. Sometimes it is a wish, a question or a technical challenge that stimulates the synapses (and eventually gives rise to a patentable idea). “More often than not, I find myself asking: Is that possible? And although it may not be what you originally envisaged, there is usually a solution—even if it means considering a multi-channel approach or custom-made products. But you always have to talk about it.” In a long-standing partnership, it is not just Roland who makes spontaneous visits on weekends when a technical question arises in the theater, now and again his customers even put their vacation on hold when there is something exciting to see or to discuss.
“What I really like is the cool-headedness that comes with time. It allows me to remain calm whatever the situation and come up with solutions together with the customer,” he explains. Roland could actually retire this year, but he’s just not ready to think about quitting yet. “I always say: If I stopped tomorrow, I would lose 200 friends in one fell swoop.” It would certainly be a huge loss for someone so deeply rooted in the thrilling world of broadcasting and theater. So he still has long-term plans. “I could actually see myself sticking around for another year or two and really giving my successor the chance to find his feet.”
It is clear that Roland is not ready for the credits to roll just yet. The story of Roland’s time at Sennheiser is still building up to its grand finale. And we remain rooted to our seats to see what happens next.