The Learning Center and the Film Scoring Department at Berklee College of Music hosted the fifth annual Music for Film networking event and associated film scoring contest on Saturday, April 10, 2010. As the only film event of its kind in New England, the Music for Film networking event drew more than 200 Berklee students, faculty, and alumni, as well as film students from New England colleges and professional filmmakers.
The event involved a speakers' panel, a film scoring contest, and an exposition where students had booths and networked with industry professionals. Speakers included film scorer and Emmy award-winner Mason Daring (Lone Star; Sunshine State), and Music Business faculty and attorney, Valerie Lovely.
With more than 50 entries from Berklee students, the film scoring contest displayed a high caliber of talent. Prizes included nearly $2,000 worth of audio equipment and software from MOTU. The contestants were judged by a panel consisting of NYU Tisch Asia graduate student Chris Martin, NYU Tisch Asia professor Allan Nicholls (Dead Ringer; I Am a Hotel), film and video game composer Wataru Hokoyama (Bean Cake; One), Berklee associate professor Jon Klein, and the winner of 2009's contest, Mark Hadley.
Man or Mouse?: The Modern Conundrum
The Value of the Human Factor in Film Music, at Any Budget
Presented by: Mason Daring
Emmy, Peabody, and Golden Globe award-winning film and television composer Mason Daring presented an inside look into getting more for your music budget. Using an example from his film Honeydripper (directed by John Sayles), he showed a scene during the opening credits where two young, rural-Alabama boys walk into town to try and sneak into the Honeydripper Lounge in the 1950s. Mason discussed his options for music, saying that the opening credits are a crucial opportunity to "show the universe that you know what you're doing." He wanted to convey to the viewer not only time and place, but also that they were in for a good story. With a limited budget, thus forgoing a string orchestra, he decided on harmonica, jug, and grunting, chest-beating "human" noises. Choosing his players very carefully (wanting musicians that understand film music) he tracked the cue without a click, straight to picture. His music was therefore extremely organic, responsive to the scene, and accomplished his goal in a unique way.
Legal Resources for Composers and Filmmakers
Presented by: Valerie Lovely
Attorney and founder of The Music Law Firm, Valerie Lovely is an Assistant Professor at Berklee and berkleemusic.com, teaching courses such as "Legal Aspects of the Music Industry". On a topic drawing much interest from composers and filmmakers both, she fielded many questions from the audience, and covered many details given the short 45 minute time span. Starting with copyright law, she discussed the law regarding pros and cons of signing over copyright in a work-for-hire situation. She then covered performing rights organizations ASCAP, BMI and SESAC, how they are setup, and what a public performance of your work means, how license fees from venues are collected and distributed. Warning against copyright infringement, she urged filmmakers and producers to acquire the necessary licenses from artists to use their music. Find Valerie at www.vlovely.com.
Music for Film Expo
At the Music for Film Expo, Berklee students that pre-registered for the event could sign up for an expo booth, where they could play demos, show their websites and exchange business cards. Filmmakers, many from Emerson College, and the Center for Digital Imaging Arts at Boston University, avidly circulated around the expo meeting Berklee students and making connections for potential future collaborations.
Film Scoring Contest 6 Showcase
The last part of the Music for Film Networking event was the 6th annual Film Scoring Contest Finalists' Showcase and Awards Ceremony. With 41 entries to the contest this year, the caliber and talent on display was fantastic. Each of the seven finalists, whose scores were premiered, shared with the audience their interpretation of the movie and creative process when composing their scores. The winners were chosen by our judging panel, which included: WHAM director Chris Martin, film & game composer Wataru Hokoyama, Associate Professor of Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music Jon Klein, NYU Tisch School of the Arts Asia faculty member and writer Allan Nicholls, and last year's contest winner and Berklee student Mark Hadley.
Click here for contest and showcase details.