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Diary 10: More about the score

May 13, 2017

This score found its way in a very non-linear manner. The music ‘happened’ to different scene’s randomly like mushrooms when it’s raining. This was partly due to the similar way the film was shot too. It’s a very different way I had composed before, but this kind of non-linear way to work was a good and fresh way of doing things, and prevented me from falling to patterns. It’s advisable always to keep an open mind and develop your skills, as well as never stop learning.


There are several themes in this film, that are woven together. A central theme, that is the most melodic one, is called ‘Love’. It appears slowly throughout the film and on scene’s that have similar theme. Obviously these scenes are vey different, as they are different stories, but this is where the music works as a glue. The idea was to bring coherence to the story and guide the viewer with suggestions towards what is happening ‘behind’ screen, as well as complementing what is happening on the screen. By suspending the tension and avoiding to clearly resolve the musical phrase until a until a certain important scene, the theme is slowly built up and ‘glued’ within the film. This is a commonly used technique in film scoring, and it is referred to as leitmotif.  


As the most important job of this score, in this film particularly, is to make it coherent. To help making those links between the stories and guide the listener. After talking with the music editor of the film ‘Love Actually’ (ref),  Michael Price, at the panel ‘Art of Application’ in Bristol, I got valuable feedback on how to approach a multi-story line. He encouraged me to try to ‘be the glue’ of the film, bring coherence to the film and resist a TV-series effect: “Try to avoid sounding like ‘Friends’” (Price, 2017). 

I also researched previous multi-storyline films, such as Magnolia, 21 Grams and Amores Perros, If the music was original, there didn't seem to be much of music. Having that amount of silence worked well, but for our film, I felt like I want to contribute more in the narrative with the music.


I will discuss the production techniques in more depth in the next post.


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