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NZ Film Makers Competing for APO Backing

NZ Film Makers Competing for APO Backing

By Amberleigh Jack

New Zealand film-makers have been competing for a chance to showcase their short films with live backing from the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra (APO) next weekend, with the first CUT TO: MUSIC competition.

Film-makers were asked to create a short film to a score by composer Tom McLeod and according to the APO website were judged on “originality, creativity and synergy with the music”.

The APO publicist and communications manager, Caleb Starrenburg, says there has definitely been a great deal of interest in the competition and while he didn’t watch all of the films entered, the ones he did see were impressive.

He says the motivation behind the competition came from “the realisation that directors are often keen to film first and set the score to the images later”, and so the idea was to provide a score with which film-makers could create a piece to fit.

Starrenburg also says the competition allowed people with little knowledge of classical music to be introduced to it.

“I think many people’s first contact with orchestral music is with film scores,” he says, and through the CUT TO: MUSIC competition they are using that as a medium to bring orchestral music to a broader audience.

The films were required to be no longer than seven minutes and the score could not be altered in any way. Other than that the film-makers were given complete creative control.

The winner will be announced at APO’s Return of a Night at The Movies event next weekend. As well as seeing their film shown live, the winner will also receive a trip to Melbourne and tickets to the Melbourne International Film Festival.

Starrenburg says with the high amount of interest the competition received this year it is likely it will continue in the future as part of the Symphonic Pops series which will “appeal to an audience beyond the classical music realm.


Amberleigh Jack is a Journalism Student at AUT

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