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Ludovic Bource nominated for an Oscar for The Artist
22-Feb-2012 -

“The composer's sly wit, ample élan and unmistakable affection for the music of his native France send the familiar to places that are refreshing, often delightful and occasionally thrilling.” 
Jim Fusilli, Wall Street Journal

Composer Ludovic Bource has been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Score for the silent film, The Artist, specially composed for director Michel Hazanavicius’ acclaimed tribute to a bygone era in Hollywood. Of the nomination, Ludovic Bource says, “I am humbled and overjoyed to learn of my Oscar nomination. Last week I came to Hollywood for the first time in my life, which in and of itself, was a dream come true.  I started playing the accordion when I was 8 years old, I wish I could go back in time and tell myself about today, the dream continues!"

Set in 1927, this film is the story of a love affair between George Valentin, a superstar of silent movies (Jean Dujardin in a role that recently earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical) and the young extra Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo). With the arrival of sound in the movies, the end of George’s career is in sight, while Peppy is destined for stardom. The Artist has delighted lovers of classic silent cinema thanks to superb black-and-white photography – and also due to the quality of the music composed by Ludovic Bource.

Bource has written the score for all four films produced by Hazanavicius to date, and this time, in the absence of spoken dialogue, his composition takes on the role of a leading player. Hazanavicius structured the film in narrative blocks to indicate what mood the music should achieve. Bource responded by producing brilliant and catchy original music in the spirit of great names of the past such as Chaplin, Max Steiner, Franz Waxman and Bernard Hermann. Both director and composer looked closely at the way film music created moods in the 1920s, and Bource refers both to the big romantic symphonic repertoire of the 19th century and to later composers – Prokofiev, Debussy, Ravel – who inspired film scores of that era. This is music that speaks and takes its own important part in the story.

The recording was made by the Flanders Philharmonic Orchestra in Brussels with all the resources needed to create powerful effects: 80 musicians, including 50 string players, 4 French horns, 4 trombones, 5 percussionists and a harpist. However, the variety of the soundtrack extends beyond the symphonic mode, as the tap dance scenes are played to lively big band music.

Critics have been quick to praise the score: “In the 100 minutes of The Artist, Bource's music touches on a lifetime of sounds, from Bollywood melodicism to noir-like diversions” (Los Angeles Times) and “much of the film's success rests with its lush orchestral score” (Variety).  Following its nomination for the Palme d’Or at Cannes in May 2011, The Artist also made a big impact at the Moscow Film Festival, the Montreal World Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival – in fact it has been selected for more than 40 film festivals worldwide.
The score is available from, Amazon UK, Amazon France and Amazon Germany.


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