Minggu, Juli 24, 2011

Creative minds behind Cirque du Soleil's 'Iris'

Tanggal 24 Juli, Los Angeles Times mem-publish wawancara dengan director-choreographer Philippe Decouflé dan Danny Elfman. Sangat menarik, berikut kutipannya:

Philippe, why did Cirque want Danny involved in this show?
Decouflé: Cirque du Soleil asked me to work on this show and to find a creative team. So my very first idea was let's ask Daniel, because he's one of my favorite composers. "The Nightmare Before Christmas" is a movie I have seen 50 times. And I had the chance that Danny, he hadn't seen a lot of dance shows in his life, but he saw my solo work in New York a little while before.

Elfman: It was really a bit of fate. I had an agent who was booking concerts. So one night in New York, he says, "We're going to go see a show, a dance show." And I get to the theater and there's just this picture of one person. It's a solo. And I go, "What?! You've taken me to a solo performance? Oh my god, I'm going to see a modern dance solo performance! This is going to be horrible!" And I loved the show. I said, "Whoever this Decouflé is, I'd love to work with him some day." And six months later I get this call saying Cirque is interested. And you also have to remember I started out as a street musician. I was a fire-breather, same as Guy [Cirque Chief Executive Guy Laliberté]. My first performing in my life was with a French musical-theatrical group, Le Grand Magic Circus.

The music for "Iris" incorporates many different styles, from Latin jazz to Balinese gamelan and Japanese taiko drums to serialism.

Elfman: Sometimes I'd get an idea thrown at me, just something to grab hold of. So there was lots of things, like doing Gershwin-esque, or doing Leonard Bernstein, doing something romantic.

Is there anything you haven't been able to do in the Kodak Theatre?
Decouflé: I have a model of the Kodak Theatre in my house in Paris, a big one, and I've slept with it for three years. (Laughter.) There is a basic problem in the Kodak: It's the American sickness of king-size. It's too big. It's a reproduction of an Italian theater, but really like king-size. So we had to fight to try to twist the relationship that the spectators have with the space. Because if you respect the normal aperture, it's too big, too far.

Elfman: That's what I noticed right from the beginning. "Iris" is much more human-based. There's a sense of anticipation that's more old-school circus than the new Cirque du Soleil shows. Because I've seen "O" twice, I've seen "Ka" twice. And I never feel that anything could ever go wrong in those shows, they're like clockwork. But here, you have four people, two people, six people, just doing their act, there's no help, there's nothing but them and their bodies. I bite my nails and grit my teeth much more than in any other Cirque show that I've seen. I know they're going to be OK, but I have to look away at moments because it just looks too insanely difficult. To me, of all the Cirque shows I've seen, this one, its unique quality is that connection with the human element. You don't need $100 million of CGI. You're just watching performers performing. And what a joy that is.

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Danny Elfman on Tim Burton, Gus Van Sant, and why it's so hard to sing in Russian: An EW Q&A

Tanggal 22 Juli kemarin, situs EW mem-publish wawancaranya dengan Danny Elfman. Macam-macam isinya, berikut kutipannya:

To Die For

“Much like Beetlejuice, nothing seemed to work for temp. I had the pleasure of seeing the movie in a preview without the music and watching the audience be totally confused. After the score was in, the preview got much better because I was able to bring a tone to the film. Nobody quite understood what the film was, and the music going in helped the audience understand what the tone of the film was. They knew that To Die For was a dark film about a murder, but the score let them know it was OK to snicker and laugh a little. They didn’t understand that at first, that it was OK to have fun with the film. So I knew I had to do that right away, starting with the opening titles.”


“I don’t think about pop music a lot. I’m busy all the time. If someone asks me to sing something, I’ll be like, ‘OK.’ The producers of Wanted had been struggling to get a song together, and Cathy Nelson from Universal said, ‘Why don’t you take a theme from the movie and turn it into a song?’ So I did, and I laid down a bass line and did one verse and one chorus and sent it out, and I didn’t think about it again. So Wanted is done, and I’m off in London scoring Hellboy with Guillermo Del Toro, and I get a call from Cathy. And she said, ‘Remember ‘The Little Things’? That song you did for Wanted?’ And I said, ‘Uh, no.’ So she sent me an MP3, and [director] Timur [Bekmambetov] decided that’s what he wanted. They needed it in about a week, and I was in the middle of scoring in London. So I wrote another couple of verses and a chorus and did my best to demo it in my hotel, and suddenly we had to go record it. I got a producer named Dave Sardo, and he came in to lay down the tracks, which I wasn’t really able to be there for. But he used my demo as a guide, and I went there in between sessions for Hellboy. We were working around the clock, and I would take a break and go into a side studio to record the vocals.

“And just to torture me more, Timur wanted a Russian version. And I asked him which Russian singer he was going to use, and he insisted that I do it in Russian. So after a double session with the huge Hellboy orchestra at Abbey Road Studios, I met with a Russian coach. But Russian is really hard, especially for an English-speaking person. So we would go over it line by line, and I would sing it back to her in Russian. To my ear it was exactly how it was supposed to sound, but she was constantly laughing, because I kept getting it wrong and couldn’t even hear the difference. By the end of that session, I felt like my brain was spent. There was no more brain. It was gone. I will never think another thought. Trying to sing in Russian murdered me. But it does exist. “The Little Things,” in Russian, sung by me. Those are the sacrifices we make for directors we love.”

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‘The Hunger Games’ Exclusive Motion Poster Revealed

Berita tanggal 19 Juli yang lalu *uhuk!*, poster The Hunger Games di-publish di Yahoo! Movies. Film ini score-nya akan dibuat oleh Danny Elfman. Berikut kutipannya:

Katniss wears a mockingjay pin -- the flaming symbol on the poster -- which is a sign of rebellion against Panem's oppressive government.

I must say that's a pretty poster, tapi hati-hati membaca artikelnya, ada plot spoiler. Lihat poster-nya di sini. Filmnya akan diputar tanggal 23 Maret 2012.

Selasa, Juli 12, 2011

Christine Guter: Do What You Love

Danny Elfman membuat lagu untuk dinyanyikan Christine Guter di pementasan Iris. Berikut kutipan wawancara dengan Christine Guter:

Guter: Just this past week I sang the background tracks for the new Cirque du Soleil "Iris" show that will be playing in L.A. Music by Danny Elfman.

Sander: How much time did you have to prepare for that?
Guter: You are given no time to prepare. You show up to the sound stage and sight read the music. It's extremely challenging, exciting and rewarding. You don't really have the liberty of making mistakes when you're on the clock in the studio. Time is money.

Sander: Do you get much direction for your studio vocal performances?
Guter: The composer is almost always there, as well as the vocal contractor. There is also a conductor who assists. They let the choir know what sound, vocal color and emotion they want to convey in the music: darker, sweeter, more vibrato, classical sounding, straight tone, etc.

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Big Top Danny

Danny Elfman diwawancarai mengenai musiknya untuk Iris, berikut kutipannya:

GCD: Are you a big fan of musical theater?
DE: You know, I'm really not a big fan of musical theater onstage, but the things I love, I really love. My tastes run close to Tim's: my favorite musical would probably be Sweeney Todd, so I was incredibly happy when Tim was doing that. I'm not a fan of contemporary musicals per se. I love classics: West Side Story, old Rodgers and Hammerstein. In the last 30 years, I've liked bits and pieces here and there but I'm not a fan of pop musicals. When Broadway went with pop in general as a motif, it kinda lost me a bit. But I haven't given up on it. I still want to do something interesting and strange that I could get my teeth into. It's just a matter of getting the right project.

GCD: So there is a possibility we could see a live stage musical from you some day?
DE: Oh yeah. A Broadway-style production? Absolutely. I have worked on a few already. I've dabbled.

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The Danny Elfman Project

Pertama kalinya akan ada konser yang khusus memainkan musik-musik film karya Danny Elfman.. American Youth Orchestra akan memainkan musik-musik dari Batman, Edward Scissorhands dan lain-lainnya di Royce Hall, UCLA, Los Angeles tanggal 29 April 2012. Selain konser, ada juga simposium dengan Danny Elfman di sore harinya. Berikut kutipannya:

The Danny Elfman Project
4 PM Symposium
7 PM Concert

Following the success of The Goldsmith Project, AYS explores the work of famed film composer and popular musician Danny Elfman. Selections from Elfman's scores for Tim Burton's Batman and Edward Scissorhands, among other movies, will be performed alongside classical masterpieces. This is a great opportunity to hear Elfman's scores be performed live in the concert hall! The afternoon symposium will feature a live performance and discussion of his innovative work and collaborations.

Free events | Reservations open March 6

Baca di situsnya di sini. Konsernya si gratis, cuma tiket pesawatnya aja ke Taipei trus ke LA yang musti dibeli, sekitar 1100 dolar pulang pergi, plus akomodasi slama di sana uhuk.

Jumat, Juli 01, 2011


Setelah beberapa hari berita dari berbagai situs, akhirnya dapat juga yang hanya press release-nya sebagai sumber aslik yang sebenarnya dirilis tanggal 28 Juni, berikut kutipannya:

LIONSGATE today announced an unprecedented film music collaboration between Academy Award® winner and two time nominee T Bone Burnett (CRAZY HEART, COLD MOUNTAIN) and four time Academy Award® nominated composer Danny Elfman (ALICE IN WONDERLAND, SPIDER-MAN) on the music for the highly anticipated film adaptation of THE HUNGER GAMES, based on the first in Suzanne Collins's runaway bestselling book trilogy.

Elfman and Burnett will be collaborating on the film score, with Burnett also serving as the film's Executive Music Producer, producing songs for the film and soundtrack.

Said Lionsgate's Head of Film Music Tracy McKnight of the musical dream team assembled on behalf of the film, "THE HUNGER GAMES is such a special property – it has worldwide mass appeal, but it's also sophisticated, cerebral, soulful, and rebellious. We needed a composer who can translate these qualities musically, and we have not one but two incredible artists in an absolutely thrilling first time ever collaboration."

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