We are in the relatively early days of an emerging art form combining music and film into live experiences. Back in the days when John Williams performed his masterpiece E.T. live to picture it would have been difficult to foresee the explosion of this art form that would follow.
It is now commonplace for orchestras around the globe to perform to picture with a slew of titles. Music from video games, TV, documentaries and indie films have joined the mix. Hybrids show combing film, instrumental concert, song, dance and theater have paved the way for shows celebrating musicals.
Artists like Hans Zimmer and Danny Elfman have created shows presenting their works in wildly unexpected manners. Robert Townson created a concert centered around movie poster images by illustrator Drew Struzan. And we have only seen the tip of this iceberg. We are in the pioneering days of a new frontier.
WHY DO THESE CONCERTS WORK?
On another thread, Charles Gaskell raised some interesting questions about the appeal of film concerts.
As this art form evolves and expands it would be similar to asking why people connect to other live art forms like opera or Broadway or ballet or rock shows. The truth is that no one connects to every form of art and they definitely don’t connect to every piece presented within it.
From my perspective, when people say they have enjoyed something within this art form, I believe the key component is that it is a communal experience that makes people leave their homes to share in something that can, and will, only happen live in that moment.
The communal experience can include collectively watching a beloved film together, discovering a previously unseen movie in a unique setting, focusing on the musical aspects, being transported by a unique presentation, watching and hearing musicians perform live, appreciation of film making and composing and, quite often, simply enjoying a great night out.
I can hardly wait to experience what expressions of this powerful art form, still in its infancy, lie ahead.