Friday, April 27, 2007

Speaking of bella Italia, this is an Italian poster for Ken Russell's 1975 biographical fantasia, MAHLER. This is one of Ken's best bio films, and indeed one of his best features.
The poster shows (partially!) Antonia Ellis as Cosima Wagner.
This photo was taken in Milan around the time of the original European release.
I'm a big Russell fan and wrote a feature review of his LISZTOMANIA for Film Quarterly (U. of California Press) shortly after this much maligned film was released. Someday I'd like to write about MAHLER as well.
I recently was able to track down one of Russell's rare BBC bio films, CLOUDS OF GLORY, about the relationship between Williams Wordsworth, and his sister, Dorothy.
As with MAHLER, CLOUDS OF GLORY (with David Warner as Wordsworth) was shot in England's beautiful Lake District. This short film was a real find (on VHS tape only, I believe) and was one of my most memorable viewing experiences so far this year.
Bravo, Ken!

Once Upon A Portastudio

As you can see, everyone loves Snow White and her seven little friends. (Even in Italy where she is known as Bianca Neve (or something like that. This photo was taken at some kind of garden ornament center somewhere in mid-Italy).

So anyway, it was interesting to work on a show for young people which does a spin on the familiar fairy tales and characters. I've been working on the music for this show, ONCE UPON A FOREST, for over a month now. The music is almost complete and I'm currently working on sounds for wind and a dragon.

The script calls for everything from Celtic marches to period swing dances and suggestions of '60s pop. Obviously this is not your grandmother's fairy tale style, and creating the various styles and periods has been great fun.

My personal style also ranges from techno to retro. My creative/recording processes are the same. I work with a new Casio digital keyboard/work station, but I record with an fairly vintage (by now) Tascam 4-track analogue cassette recorded (which I just had serviced down near Disneyland).

Luckily everything worked for this project, as I am very prone to technical disasters when nearing the deadline for an important project.

As note in a previous post, the show is being produced by Open Stage of Harrisburg in May. See previous post for details.

Spring on Sunset Blvd.

Looking east on Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles. Near the Cinerama Dome and the world-famous Amoeba. Spiderman is coming!

Malibu Spring

Spring by the sea. Giant coreopsis blooming along the California coast at Malibu.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Sort of Bloggin' + New Original Score

Already behind on my bloggin'.

Because currently I'm working on a new theater score, for a production of ONCE UPON A FOREST, for Open Stage of Harrisburg.

Once Upon A Forest -

A contemporary spin on characters from the Brothers Grimm and other fairy and folklore tales.

May 18, 7:00, May 19, 2:00 & 7:00 and May 20, 2:00.
For more INFO:
Ginger Roberts
Coordinator of Educational Programs
Open Stage of Harrisburg
223 Walnut Street
Harrisburg, PA 17101
717 214-3250

So I have not really had the time to explore all the possibilities here.

Spring is moving apace in California, however. We actually had a few hours of rain yesterday, Friday, April 20 (2007).