British skiffle band The Dodge Brothers, reinforced with pianist/composer Neil Brand, will accompany William A. Wellman’s silent film classic Beggars of Life (1928) at the 31st Midnight Sun Film Festival (June 15th-19th 2016). Louise Brooks, the beauty with the bob, takes centre stage in her most beloved American role.
With his piano Neil Brand will also accompany a parade of short films by Hal Roach. In this screening, festival audience can laugh at the antics of Charlie Chase, Laurel and Hardy and the dynamic duo of Marion Byron and Anita Garvin.
One of the most internationally known Finnish pianists, Iiro Rantala, has composed a new score of Aki Kaurismäki’s masterly silent film Juha (1999). Rantala will perform his version of Kaurismäki’s tour de force at Sodankylä’s international premiere.
Film music matinee on Wednesday
Festival begins with film music matinee on Wednesday, 15th of June from 10AM to 3.30PM.
Neil Brand, one of the leading experts of silent film music, conducts the international part of the matinee by highlighting some well-known samples from film music history and leading the conversation with the audience.
Brand is also known for presenting BBC documentary film Sound of Cinema: The Music That Made the Movies (2013), which celebrates the art of cinema soundtrack from early ages to present day.
In the domestic part of the matinee, composer-musician Anssi Tikanmäki and director Mika Kaurismäki take part in a discussion about cinema music, their collaborated works and Tikanmäki’s career as composer.
Cinema music classics, metal music and karaoke
Films featuring music by some of the top film composers in the world, e.g. Bernard Herrmann, Nino Rota, Ennio Morricone, Angelo Badalamenti and Ryuichi Sakamoto, can be seen in Sodankylä this summer. Film classics such as Psycho, Blue Velvet and Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence, a David Bowie homage, are part of the programme.
In Wacken 3D (2014), 25th anniversary film of the biggest heavy metal music festival in the world, mythical Motörhead figure Lemmy Kilmister, Alice Cooper, Henry Rollins and the members of Deep Purple and Rammstein discuss the meaning of Wacken in between of live music samples.
Meanwhile, Jaco (2014), is a documentary film about Jaco Pastorius, the “Jimi Hendrix of bass guitar”. Among those reminiscing the late bass guitar wizard are Sting, Joni Mitchell, Carlos Santana and Herbie Hancock.
And as always, MSFF presents a comprehensive setting of film karaoke treats in the spirit of last year’s ecstatic Purple Rain sing-along. The first confirmed karaoke screening is The Saimaa Gesture (1981), a 35-year old cult classic by the Kaurismäki brothers. More karaoke screenings will be confirmed later on.
The line-up of the international festival guests of MSFF 2016 will be published next week and the rest of the program later in May and early June.