CINE: Here are The Finalists for The 2016 Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest- Emerging Category! The Winner will be announced June 9th!
The 2016 Scoring contest has two categories, to give opportunity to the very young talented composers:
The winners of the Marvin Hamlisch Award in the Youth and Emerging Categories will receive a trophy presented at CINE Celebrates: New York.
We are proud to announce the distinguished jury for the 2016 Marvin Hamlisch Contest: Academy Award-winning composer Mychael Danna (Best Original Score, Life of Pi, 2012); multiple BMI-award-winning composer and Emmy nominee George S. Clinton; and Emmy Award-winning music editor, supervisor and conductor Daniel Carlin (Chair of Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television at USC’s Thornton School of Music); composer and music supervisor Ronald Sadoff, Director of Programs in Film Scoring and Songwriting at NYU Steinhardt; composer Alison Plante, acting chair of Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music; and Vasco Hexel, composer, conductor, arranger and area leader in the Composition for Screen program at the Royal College of Music.
The EMERGING category finalists are:
Aija Alsina: Hometown: Riga, Latvia
Aija is a Latvian composer writing music for films and visual media. Music has been her passion since a very young age — she first learned to play the piano at the age of six and has since been dedicated to many different musical activities throughout her life, singing in choirs, playing in bands, participating in concerts and festivals and recording albums. She never had any formal musical education and spent over ten years working in finance, until recently her long lasting dream came true and she became a student again, this time following her passion in a master’s program in Music Composition for Film and Media at the University of Hertfordshire near London.
Her relationship with composition is a relatively fresh endeavour. Although she has always written her own parts (mostly keys and bass) in the indie and post-rock bands she played in, her true composition ability revealed itself only when she moved to Barcelona four years ago, thus leaving her band behind and reuniting with her childhood instrument — the piano. She now uses it to create memorable and haunting compositions, often combined with guitar, cello and other string parts.
Throughout her career Aija has lived in various cities from Riga to Copenhagen to Barcelona and now London, and her music combines and interprets all these influences in a unique way. Her haunting and delicate piano and string pieces express her Nordic roots, but she also loves experimenting with rhythms in the form of minimal beats, creating mesmerising and unforgettable compositions.
PHILOSOPHY: Aija considers honesty to be the ultimate virtue, important both in personal life and professionally — to be true to music and always try to do it justice. Being strongly emotional, this comes naturally to Aija, her feelings deeply influencing the musical results and the mood of her compositions. She does not believe in mechanical precision to be the most important part of music — rather, the deeply personal connection between the artist‚Äôs soul and the harmonies, chords and melodies that are being formed. It is only music that is born this way that is truly able to move other people as well.
Amanda Lee Falkenberg: Hometown: Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Amanda Lee Falkenberg began playing the piano at the age of 2 and a half.
After receiving multiple awards for her dynamic playing and graduating with Honors in Piano Performance at the Elder Conservatorium of Music in South Australia, she won a position as pianist with the prestigious Australian Ballet Company.
This vibrant environment is where Falkenberg began her career as a composer. Her gift for improvisation to accompany ballet dancers as they trained, progressed to her recording over 120 captivating compositions for her highly acclaimed “Moving With Music” CD series.
Her gifts for writing “visual music” naturally led her to compose for other visual media, including her own 30 minute orchestral ballet, stage plays, short films, student feature films, documentaries and animation. Her varied music styles range from solo piano, to epic orchestral scores; cutting edge sound design to whimsical underscores.
She composed an original solo piano soundtrack to the silent short film, “Marie” that was premiered at the short film corner at the Cannes Film Festival.
Over the last decade she has received multiple nominations for her orchestral film scores as well as popular culture music at the Hollywood Music in Media Awards (HMMA) and Los Angeles Music Awards.
Falkenberg is currently based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, where she continues to compose and teach piano and composition.
PHILOSOPHY: My character is built firmly on a strong desire to constantly work hard at my craft, always striving for excellence and to be as loyal to my artistic spirit as possible. For me, this is achieved through the exciting process of constantly learning and studying, discovering and actively engaging with life, and there by allowing the creative spirit to manifest and bring forth its own individual expression in whatever capacity it desires. This is the ultimate recipe for true joy, happiness and peace in life.
My core values are:
INTEGRITY — Be true to your authentic self, listening to your inner voice for guidance and bravely obeying that.
INSPIRE — To always uplift and inspire those around you, leading by example.
GRATITUDE — Feel constant joy at being here on earth and to feel gratitude for life, its opportunities and adventures.
ENCOURAGE — Reaching out and encouraging those who are equally passionate and devoted to their own creative pursuits through education and mentoring those individuals who are also finding their own paths for personal expression.
Composing music helps me express these values enormously as I feel immense vitality and joy when I am composing and feel deeply nourished when I am able to express myself creatively especially in the genre of visual arts; playing with endless sounds, textures and color and collaborating with other artistic fields to evoke emotional landscapes of great diversity, excitement, drama and passion.
Brad Frey: Hometown: Philadelphia, PA, USA
Brad Frey is a Philadelphia-based composer who has written for several films, animations, production libraries, and ensembles. He is currently studying Music Composition at the University of the Arts.
PHILOSOPHY: My goal has ultimately always been to create things that people can enjoy. As a composer, my goal remains the same — to write and create music that people enjoy, and can relate to.
Daniel Beja: Hometown: Dangers, Eure et Loire, France
BIO: Daniel Beja is a composer & guitarist living in Paris, totally autodidact he began doing electro music, then learned playing guitar in a lot of styles and is a huge fan of gypsy jazz. He’s currently playing in a lot of bands in France and doing concerts all year round. He also began composing for films, using all his musical backgrounds to make original scores.
PHILOSOPHY: Music has always been the central interest in my life, experimenting a lot of instruments and styles. I love to discover new things and consider music as an emotion with no style limit.
It’s a challenge for me to learn everyday new things, I don’t like to work in an area to repetitive and that i already know… and I consider learning music as an everyday experience with no limit, but I also consider that great music expression can be made with no knowledge at all but with a lot of feelings… This balance between feeling & knowledge is very interesting in film music expression, finding the right emotion for the right image… And as a total autodidact i like to trust my own instinct as a guide through all kind of influences.
Francois Beauvais: Hometown: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Born in Ottawa, Francois is a multi-instrumentalist. At age 5, his first instrument is the accordion but he will soon play half a dozen instruments until he choses to pursue a professional career playing guitar. After studying jazz in college, he collaborates for the first time with renowned guitar player and composer Michel Cusson by interpreting his music for the French Canadian production “La Fantastique Legende” in Drummondville, Quebec for the 2008 and 2009 productions.
In Spring 2011, Francois is invited once again to work for Cusson by joining Cavalia, a large-scale equestrian and performing arts production, often compared to Cirque du Soleil. The show had been touring since 2003 all over the world and has now been seen by more than 3.5 million spectators. In summer 2011, Fran√cois joined the tour and played guitar all over North America, Mexico, Australia, Middle East and Europe.
In January 2014, Cavalia went on to the United Arab Emirates on a special order from the Abu Dhabi royal family to create a brand new show for the events of the ”Qasr Al Hosn” Festival. The entire company was brought back to the creation stage and most of the original creators including Michel Cusson were brought back to create a whole new show where traditional Emirati music had to be composed. The score had to be re-written in a very short amount of time. Working closely with Cusson was an extremely enriching experience that inspired Fran√ßois to start composing his own music for visuals.
In the summer of 2014, Francois left the tour to pursue his new passion. He is now studying film scoring at Montreal’s UQAM University, redirecting his musical career towards his love for film and composition.
PHILOSOPHY: Playing guitar for Cavalia, I had the best seat in the house. On liberty numbers that often lasted more than 15 minutes, we had to improvise to what the talent was doing on stage with the horses. It was very important that we followed the the emotion that was portrayed on stage and not over do it. That was my favorite part of the show.
Today, my approach as a composer is exactly the same. My music is serving an image and not the other way around. I believe very strongly that music should not be noticed in films. It should elevate certain scenes but definitely on an unconscious level and in a very subtle way.
I think a good composer for film has to have a lot of empathy and be able to quickly see what a scene and his director is trying to tell. That is what I was born for and love about film scoring.
James William Blades: Hometown: London, United Kingdom
James William Blades is a London based composer and producer whose work has included a wide range of productions across documentary film, feature film, short film, popular music, theatre and fashion.
James was awarded a First Class Honours from Leeds College of Music, where he studied Music Production under the tutelage of Brian Morrell. He is now studying a masters in Composition for Screen at the Royal College Of Music.
PHILOSOPHY: I hope my values and philosophy can not be summed up entirely in this box, but within music, i try to remain as open as i possibly can. I want to understand a broad range of musical culture so as to understand how to help the broadening range of stories filmmakers tell today. We live in a much wider world with a huge emphasis on culture and technology. I hope to reflect that within my music.
Marcin Wasilewski: Hometown: Warsaw, Poland
Marcin Wasilewski is a musician, composer, sound designer and sound engineer. Graduate of Frederic Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw, Poland (now the University of Music) studying double bass under Prof. Andrew Mysinski. In 1994 -1995 was a member of the orchestra “Warsaw Soloists Concerto Avenna”, which among others, toured Germany, Japan and the United Arab Emirates.
Big fan of Dmitri Shostakovich and John Williams. In 2015 has collaborated with TVP/BBC and Discovery Channel composed music for “70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz — Special edition in Polish Television and BBC News” and “Polish Rescue Team in Nepal” ( documentary about earthquake in Kathmandu, Nepal ).
PHILOSOPHY: Movies have always stimulated my creative side. The music that I write, echoes almost everything of what I see on the screen. The best way to convey the emotional aspect of a scene is to enhance it with the music.
Mihwa Yun: Hometown: New York, NY
Born and raised in Seoul, South Korea, Mihwa Yun has wholeheartedly embraced her new home in musically vibrant New York City. Mihwa is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at the prestigious Scoring for Film and Multimedia program at New York University. Mihwa holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Composition and Film Studies from Chung-Ang University in Seoul, South Korea.
Mihwa has composed for a wide range of venues, including orchestra, ensemble and solo instrument. Mihwa has had many compositions performed by the Chung-Ang and NYU orchestras. Mihwa has also scored for a short film, Summer Vacation (2013), which debuted at the Bilbao International Film Festival. Mihwa is a talented pianist and cellist.
Mihwa became inspired to compose for film after hearing the mesmerizing scores of James Horner and Joe Hisashi. Mihwa endeavors to continue the tradition of tonal classicalism while at the same time fusing the sounds of her native Korea with the lively jazz scene of New York City. Mihwa is currently working on several projects, including a new orchestral piece and several film projects.
PHILOSOPHY: I believe music is a tool for communication. Music evokes feelings we hardly know we have, tells stories without the need for words, and represents the mathematical nature of our universe. I believe that music should be approachable by the average listener yet still showcase the musical know-how and complexities of the composer. Sometimes, we get too carried away with trying to make the next new avant-garde piece, and we forget that music is also about effectively communicating with our audience. When you fail to properly convey mood, message or the essence of a piece, you fail as a communicator. I aim to achieve this goal of being both concise in my musical form yet sensitive to the final product by writing music that maintains the best of the tonal/quasi-tonal tradition while still striving to remain innovating and exciting.
Robert Neumair: Hometown: Bozen, Italy
Born on 01/27/1982 in Bruneck, Italy. At the age of 3 1/2 he learned to play the harmonica (Steirische) from his father, learning the piano and the trumpet in the school of music. He has studied at the Tiroler Landeskonservatorium (piano and trumpet) and from 2000–2002 was a member of the acdemy of the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks‚ and the Bayerische Staatsoper. He has composed various symphonic wind orchestras, and participated in film music competitions, including Movie Music Winner 2015 (Garden State Film Festival, Atlantic City), Transatlantyk Filmmusic Competition 2014, International Filmmusic Competition Zurich, 2012 and Soundtrack Cologne 8.0 (Finalist), 2011.
PHILOSOPHY: I love it to compose film music, because I can use every genre of music and I like to play the diverse instruments in the studio for the film.
With music it’s possible to create emotions for the listeners, this is a big motivation for me. I’m careful and determined. I’m searching all the time new challenges and try to grow with them.
TIGRAN SHIRINYAN: Hometown: Philadelphia, PA, USA
I am from Armenia. I am graduated Armenian state jazz college, Erevan. Have a 10 years musicion experience there, was working as an arranger, and my dream is to work in film industry. In my country there is no chance to work in this area, because the film industry is not so advanced. I hope that my work will impress you. I am ready to work on myself continually and study more and more.
PHILOSOPHY: One must be balanced in any situation and be ready for great changes, one must always reach his aims, but, of course, without damaging others. I appreciate humanity and kindness in people. Music is everything in my life. Wherever I am and whatever I do, music helps me to reflect the condition of my soul.
Flashback about this contest:
The film scoring contest for young composers — has been taking place for a few years now. After Composer Marvin Hamlisch received the CINE’s Legends Award in 2012 he wanted to be part of the programs that CINE has for emerging young talent. After he passed (August 6, 2012,) CINE decided to name this specific contest in his honor and contestants can participate every year with a musical score for a film that they will be given to compete. For the 2016 contest the contest was divided in two categories (Under 18 y/o and Over 18 y/o to give opportunities to the verey young talented composers! Learn more about this contest / Participate in the next film scoring competition!
Congratulations to ALL the contestants!
Congratulations to the finalists for the 2016 Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest! Good Luck to all! — Terre Blair Hamlisch.
See Photo Album: The Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest for Emerging Composers — 2015 Award Presentation
CONGRATULATIONS TO EVERYONE. The CINE organization, The contestants, the Judges! Team Marvin Hamlisch.
- Flashback: The 2012 CINE Legends Award goes to Marvin Hamlisch
- Cine Award for Lifetime Achievement for a Composer
- Terre Blair Hamlisch to the contestans: Congrats to the 10 Finalists!
- CINE’s The Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest for Emerging Composers”
- As It Happened — CINE’s 2015 “Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest for Emerging Composers. Congratulations to the winner and Runner-up!
- Cine Celebrates: The 2015 Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest