Music in Your Ears and Pictures in Your Head

As a big fan of film music I absolutely had to go to the annual “Hollywood in Vienna” event held at the Konzerthaus. I first heard about this event last year when attending a class about film music and its important part in supporting the narration as well as other elements of a movie.

The Film Music Gala Concert was first held in 2007 and has since been organized each year, except for 2008. This year, the music pieces focused on the soundtracks of Harry Potter, How To Train Your Dragon, E.T. and a few other great melodies.

All the guests were asked to appear in a ‘festive evening dress’, so naturally my mother, one of my sisters and I tried to look our very best! This was a change to last year’s gala, as in 2010 we didn’t manage to get tickets for the actual event but for the final rehearsal where the dress code wasn’t that strict.

Dress - made by me
Tights - Music Legs
Shoes - bought in Greece

As it so happens with music that you have heard before, it often produces certain pictures in your head, which is even more the case when talking about film music. The music pieces that were played on this evening all reminded me of certain scenes of the movies they were featured in, while on the big screen on stage you could also see real pictures from the specific movie.

As always, the Gala featured a few famous personalities, local as well as international. There was the Austrian designer Nhut La Hong, who was originally born in Vietnam and functioned as the official designer for this year's Gala concert.
Also in the audience was the orchestrator Alastair King who is probably most famous for conducting some of the Harry Potter movies. He also got to conduct one of the medleys from the Harry Potter series played at the gala. A few other people that came on stage during the course of the concert were the famous harpist Xavier de Maistre, Austrian singer Nadine Beiler (who interpreted the song "Believe" from The Polar Express), German actor Gedeon Burkhard (as moderator) and Alan Silvestri.

La Hong

Interviews with Alastair King.

After a short break, the second part of the evening started, which was entirely dedicated to one of Hollywood's greatest composers: Alan Silvestri. He was the recipient of this year's Max Steiner Award and therefore the second half of the concert featured only scores that he composed.
The musical pieces played during the gala were from the following motion pictures: The Abyss, Father of the Bride, Contact, Mouse Hunt, Death Becomes Her, Van Helsing, Night at the Museum, The Polar Express, Back to the Future, The Mummy Returns, and Forrest Gump.

Nadine Beiler, after singing the Grammy Award-
winning song "Believe".

The Film Music Gala Concert ended with a theme from the new movie Captain Ameria: The First Avenger and after that, the ORF Symphony Orchestra as well as the conductor, John Axelrod, left the stage to take their well-deserved break after a long, great evening of magical and inspiring music.

From left to right: Michael Balvagy, Sandra Tomek,
Alan Silvestri, Christian Oxonitsch, (don't remember),
Alastair King.
Left to right: Sandra Tomek, Michael Balvagy, Nadine
Beiler, Alan Silvestri, Christian Oxonitsch.

P.S.: I apologize for the quality of some of the pictures. Even though my camera has a really good zoom not every picture turns out perfectly, but in general I'm really satisfied with the photos it gives me.


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