Grayson Gilmour is a member of the Screen Composers Guild of New Zealand and recently attended the Berlinale Talent Campus in Berlin Germany with the generous support of the NZ Film Commission. Other kiwi’s in attendance this year were Director Bryn Evans and composer Marshall Smith.
As a film composer I quite often find moments of recognition to be somewhat surreal – a surprising break from the solitary work of creating music that many refer to as a ‘silent art’. Furthermore, as someone who prefers this relatively anonymous position in the film making process, the limelight from being invited to an international ‘summit and networking platform for 300 outstanding creatives’ is both exhilarating and terrifying! Nonetheless, the Berlinale Talent Campus presented an amazing opportunity to put myself out in the world as a composer – engaging with writers, directors, producers and many highly skilled individuals from across seventy-nine countries.
Each day would begin at 8.30am with a polite rush to the Berlinale ticket counter; attendance to guest presentations and film premieres was limited, so you had to get in quick! However, there was no shortage of activities, and many of the ‘talents’ broke off into specific groups that catered to their interests. I, along with fourteen other composers/sound designers, was part of the ‘sound studio’ for which the Berlinale had prepared excursions to local post-production studios in Berlin, a recording session with the Babelsburg film orchestra, a Dolby Atmos masterclass, and a discussion with Carsten Nicolai – an experimental musician whose recently scored The Revenant in collaboration with Ryuichi Sakamoto.
As stimulating as these events were, it was the promise of making creative connections with filmmakers around the world that in fact drew most of my attention and exhausted me into the wee hours every morning! Film music occupies a highly subjective space that is ever so close to a narrative’s emotional centre, so for me it made sense to strongly engage over music with as many people as possible within a week – while at the same time offloading as many business cards and portfolio samples as humanly possible.
Find out more about Grayson’s music at graysongilmour.com/wp/
Find out more about the Berlinale Talents at berlinale-talents.de/#
Find out more about the Screen Composers Guild at screencomposersguild.co.nz/