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And The Winner Is: Gaute Storaas

Impressions from the NFCN 2011 award


Not too many people go to live concerts with film music; never the less this was the case Saturday 30th, as 350 invited heads from all parts of the European film business went to the closing party at CPH PIX in Copenhagen. Todays' special was just that: a 35 minute concert with music by the five NFCN nominees, played by a delicate symphonic orchestra comprising some of Denmark’s best musicians, and conducted by Jørgen Lauritsen who had to leave out his baton due to severe space limitations on stage. 

It is safe to say that the audience, most of them seasoned film professionals used to the hubbub of Cannes and film in general, experienced something new: you would expect a partying crowd like that to continue chatting and speaking on cell phones. Not the case here: even through the most quiet and intimate moments of the music, people sat still and enjoyed the sensation of live acoustic music (not to forget the great visuals on the screen behind the orchestra).


After the show, Michael Nyman, heading the international jury also comprising Joycelyn Pook and

Luis Ivars delivered an enjoyable speech, mentioning that he seriously considered applying for Nordic citizenship in order to qualify for the award. He then went on to explain the jury's decision to give the award to Gaute Storaas for his score for 'Elias..', which in short is that to write and perform symphonic music that runs the entire length of the feature film, and not least do it with such sophistication and expert use of the many colors of an orchestra, is an achievement you really have to acknowledge.


So. Where does that leave the rest of the competition, you may ask. Indeed, all five nominees where top of the line, leaving quite a heavy decision for the jury. When all five scores are original, strong and well performed, each in its own respect, how do you choose !? 

I had the pleasure of talking to most of the nominees after the show, and they made quite clear to me that actually winning the prize was something secondary; what matters is that you're actually nominated by your colleagues, not just the press or the business. This, the concert and being part of NFCN is what it's really about. 

Halfdan E