WATCH: WSA Industry Days 2021 - Max Richter, Daniel Pemberton, Natalie Holt, Nainita Desai and more
From 20 until 23 October 2021, film music professionals, students and fans gathered in Ghent for the annual WSA Industry Days. Through a mixture of seminars, composer's talks, panel discussions and masterclasses, they all got a glimpse behind the scenes while scrutinizing the current state of affairs in the film music industry. Among the highlights: established names such as Max Richter, Natalie Holt and Nainita Desai discussing their work. Watch their talks and more below.
Composer's Talk: Max Richter
Max Richter stands as one of the most monumental figures on the contemporary music scene, with ground-breaking work as a composer, pianist, producer, and collaborator. Richter rose to prominence as a composer for film and TV in 2008 with his original score for Waltz with Bashir by Ari Folman. Since then, he has written scores for over thirty features, including James Gray's sci-fi opus Ad Astra and the Oscar-nominated Werk ohne Autor by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. TV aficionados will have heard his music in the cult hit series The Leftovers, but also in Nosedive, the Black Mirror episode starring Bryce Dallas Howard, and BBC series Taboo for which Richter received an Emmy nomination. Moderated by Tommy Pearson.
Composer's Talk: Daniel Pemberton
Award-winning composer Daniel Pemberton is one of the most standout voices working in modern film scoring today. His recent work has included Enola Holmes, Birds of Prey, Motherless Brooklyn - for which his incredible jazz score was nominated for a Golden Globe -, Yesterday, Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse and Ocean’s Eight. He won this year's World Soundtrack Award for Film Composer of the Year. He was also nominated for Best Original Song for the Oscar-nominated score for “Hear My Voice” (from The Trial of the Chicago 7). He was previously honoured as Discovery of The Year at the World Soundtrack Awards in 2014 and nominated as Film Composer Of The Year in 2016 and 2019. Moderated by Tommy Pearson.
Film Music Seminar: Natalie Holt
Multi-award winning composer Natalie Holt is known equally for large orchestral arrangements and intimate, textural and at times experimental electro-acoustic compositions. Enriched by her experience as a classically trained violinist, Holt’s work exists in the liminal space between orchestral, electronic and contemporary. Some of Holt’s most recent significant works include Loki and Deadwater Fell (starring David Tennant). Her music can be heard on Wallander (starring Kenneth Branagh), the series Knightfall (starring Mark Hamill), and many more. She has also contributed additional music to Paul King’s Paddington. Holt’s distinction in her field was recognised by being made an Associate of the Royal Academy in 2017. Moderated by Ruben De Gheselle.
Composer's Talk: Nainita Desai
Nainita Desai impressed the world with her original music for the documentaries For Sama and Sundance favourite The Reason I Jump. As a sound designer she cooperated with Bernardo Bertolucci, Werner Herzog, Anthony Hopkins and Angelina Jolie. During the talk she delved into her immersive, yet sometimes minimalist approach to scoring documentaries, her eclectic background as a sound designer, orchestra maestra and how world music, found sound, electronics and the human voice fuel her emotive scores. Moderated by Tommy Pearson.
Sketching with Music: Clara Sola
Guests: Ruben De Gheselle & Nathalie Álvarez Mesén
The Belgian Composer Ruben De Gheselle and Costa Rican-Swedish director Nathalie Alvarez Mesen discuss their latest film Clara Sola. A soundtrack is not made overnight and various, sometimes extreme, angles to a scene should be explored. For Clara Sola, too, a technique of rough, fast and focused sketching with music formed an important part of the working and dialogue process between the two artists. In this panel they discuss some of those scenes and how they came about from initial idea to final recorded form. Ruben De Gheselle is an upcoming composer who worked on several international projects and teaches at KASK & Conservatory. Nathalie Álvarez Mesén is a Costa Rican-Swedish writer and director who studied at Columbia University. Both are alumni of the famous Berlinale Talents program. Clara Sola was selected in Cannes earlier this year. At Film Fest Ghent, it won the Georges Delerue Award for Best Music. Moderated by Robin Broos
Stephan Eicke: Masterclass - How a Business Frustrates Its Creatives
As editor-in-chief of film music magazine Cinema Musica and producer for the record label Caldera Records Stephan Eicke has noticed how composers working in media have started to voice their concerns about their working conditions. Via exclusive interview excerpts with composers such as Mychael Danna and Marco Beltrami, he discusses in his masterclass the increased pressure on creatives, decreasing payments, the stress that comes with digital editing, and the necessity to work with ghost writers in order to get a job done in time.
Panel Talk: InMICS Composers Lab
Guests: Samya Papasoff, Filip Rathé, Görkem Ağar, Yi-Jia Chen, Sandro Manzon.
At Film Fest Ghent, the InMICS students and teachers gather with professionals, press and film music fans. The students talk freely about their experiences during the Composers Lab, their work and their future in the industry. Through the InMICS Composers Lab these young composers challenge themselves to find their own voices and to reflect on the ever-evolving industry. For them, it’s an opportunity to network and to share their ideas on music for audio-visual productions. Moderated by Michael Lyczek.
Lesley Jackson: Masterclass - Entering the Film Music Marketplace
Lesley Jackson established UK Film Music in 2019 following many years representing & managing prominent and award-winning composers from the UK and mainland Europe. Earlier this year Lesley was one of the judges of the prestigious Berlin International Film Scoring Competition (BIFSC) and in August will be a key contributor to 'FUSION', Thessaloniki Film Scoring workshops. In this masterclass she shares some tips and tricks on how to enter the film music market as a beginning film composer.