As we approach the Academy Awards, we’re celebrating Movie Music all week – we’ve got extra selections from beloved soundtracks throughout the day, and each night at 6pm, Classical California KUSC’s Brian Lauritzen will be speaking to a composer nominated for Best Original Score in this year’s Oscars.
- Monday, it’s Justin Hurwitz, who teamed again with director Damien Chazelle for Babylon, telling the story of the early, debauched days of Hollywood as the industry transitioned from silents to talkies. He won two Oscars for La La Land, Best Original Score and Song (“City of Stars”).
- On Tuesday, Volker Bertelmann, the composer who used a 100-year-old pump organ harmonium to create an unforgettable new and haunting sound in his score for All Quiet on the Western Front. It follows a young German soldier as he and his friends face the horrors of trench warfare in World War One.
- Wednesday, we’ll hear how Carter Burwell‘s score for The Banshees of Inisherin was taken in an unexpected direction after director Martin McDonagh said he wanted to include a piece of traditional Indonesian gamelan music in the film – that’s set on an island off the coast of Ireland in the 1920s. That piece wasn’t used after all, but it influenced the instrumentation of the score.
- On Thursday, it’s Ryan Lott, who with the other members of the band he founded, Son Lux, provided the score for the difficult-to-describe Everything Everywhere All at Once. Part sci-fi or action/adventure, part family drama, the score is as idiosyncratic as the film. They’re the first band to ever be nominated in this category.
- And we’ll end the week with a conversation with John Williams, who crafted a piano-centric score for Steven Spielberg’s autobiographical film, The Fabelmans, showing how the budding director’s childhood love of movie-making was complemented by his mother’s talent for music-making at the piano. Although Williams has been nominated for an Oscar 53 times, he’s won 5, the last one for Schindler’s List in 1994.