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Old 02-18-2016, 11:49 PM
masterofmystery masterofmystery is offline
 
Post Harry Potter Film Concert Series producers talk international tours, JK Rowling, more

Right after the official announcement of The Harry Potter Film Concert Series, beginning this June in Philadelphia, SnitchSeeker spoke to the creative producers behind the orchestral phenom, which has been approved by Warner Bros.

SnitchSeeker chatted with Justin Freer, president and founder of CineConcerts, and Brady Beauxbien, vice president of co-founder of CineConcerts, about the upcoming Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone film concert tour. Freer will be the one conducting the orchestra.

Of particular note is the approval that CineConcerts had to receive from author J.K. Rowling, their plans to go national and international with the tour in the coming years, and the fact that the tour has no end date, and will continue as long as there is fan interest.

The first six venues announced - Philadelphia, San Diego, Nashville, Silicon Valley, Milwaukee and Grand Rapids - are the ones confirmed so far, but hardly the only ones. There are many more locations which are in the running to host the program, which will feature a live orchestra playing the scores from the Harry Potter films, from John Williams to Patrick Doyle and Nicholas Hooper to Alexandre Desplat, in tandem with screenings of the eight-part saga.

There are also a few hopeful notes from the production team about how they would love to extend their tour to play alongside the Wizarding World of Harry Potter attractions at Universal Orlando Resort (and Hollywood), and the future with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.


SnitchSeeker: Can you tell us how the partnership came about with Warner Bros?
Justin Freer:
Other than Harry Potter rocks, it’s just something that Brady and I have been salivating over since Harry Potter came out. The moment we started this company several years ago, it’s just something we’ve always hoped to work towards. We were trying to coordinate with Warner Bros and J.K. Rowling for nearly two years trying to get something going. So, here we are.

SnitchSeeker: What were J.K. Rowling’s thoughts about this venture?
Justin:
Other than being very supportive, I don’t want to speak for her on her behalf. But I know her team have been very supportive of the idea, and Warner Bros as well. Only J.K Rowling knows that brilliant mind of hers.

Are you just going to do Sorcerer’s Stone or all of the films?
Brady Beauxbien:
Yeah, one of the unique things about being to do all of the movies. We’ll begin with the first one, but we’re able to offer halls the ability to do all eight. So essentially it’s a very unique chance for people that have maybe come to one of these concerts before in halls, or even if they’ve never come to a film concert in a hall before, to have more than a single night experience.

The franchise itself, through all the books and all the movies, is so large and so intricate and so complex and so rewarding, that the ability to let people go on a movie journey in halls - either in the cycle of a same year or over multiple years; that will be up to the halls’ establish their own schedules – but nevertheless it still means that all eight movies will be able to be experienced. It’s an extended experience. So we’re going to begin with the Sorcerer’s Stone, but on the heels of that every movie is going to be made available to halls to continue that experience.

SnitchSeeker: Can you describe the experience itself?
Justin:
The first thing that you’re going to see right in front of you the moment you walk in, of course, is this glorious 85-piece orchestra, which is one of the things that separates this from just watching the movie in a movie theater or on DVD. So right away we’re putting front and center the genius of all these wonderful composers from John Williams to Alexander Desplat, Nicholas Hooper to Patrick Doyle. So we have a unique opportunity to celebrate their brilliance and their amazing creative accomplishments.

But, of course, the marriage of film and music is exactly that – it’s a very delicate marriage. When it works, it’s magical. And when it works in concert halls, it’s even more magical. To feel and to hear and to see all of these things simultaneously with thousands of other people - you can just imagine the feeling and the magic of these great memories you have of the film, experiencing those memories in a new way with thousands of people. You really have to be there. You have to see it to believe it. It’s cliché, but you have to see it to believe it.

Brady: We always think that the music is the conduit to emotion for movies. It’s one of the major ways that people access and remember the great feelings that they have for movies. Harry Potter scores are so iconic, and they’re such a part of how we remember how we love the books and how we love the movies, I think it’s just so hard to separate them now. We allow people to hear that music at the same time as watching the movie within these massive, amazing concert halls – some of the most beautiful buildings and venues in the world are concert halls.

Imagine the ability to watch the movie, to listen to the music and have the memories of the franchise of the books and the movies get evoked by the music in these settings. All those things together goes to why this is a unique way of experiencing Harry Potter. It’s a pure emotionally evocative and interesting experience, which is what my own memory is from reading the books for the first time. It was a pure connection with these great stories and maybe we can get back to there and even beyond that with highlighting the music in concert halls.

SnitchSeeker: Will the movies be shown in their entirety or just select scenes?
Brady:
It is exactly the movie from frame-to-frame, complete with the music totally in sync with the film. So everywhere music appeared in the original film, it will be performed by the orchestra conducted in sync by Justin and other guest conductors as it was originally intended in the film and originally seen in the film, except live with an 85-piece orchestra.

SnitchSeeker: How long will the tour run for and where in the U.S., Canada and internationally?
Justin:
Coincidentally as you were asking that question I was reading one of the posts on your website by Jojogali about how Harry Potter “will have no end. EVER.” It’s one of the comments in response to the press release you picked up. I hope that’s where we are with the concert. I hope it’s something that we can continue to celebrate over the next several generations. Harry Potter is certainly within that realm. The music is strong enough.

The films are strong enough, and bringing them back over the years would be fantastic. To speak specifically to how the route is looking, those orchestras that we announced in the press release are confirmed, but I can tell you - without being able to divulge exactly which orchestras in which cities - that this is a global endeavor. We have every hope and intention to hit all the major cities around the world, and come to as many places as possible. Certainly there are a lot of Harry Potter fans out there, and just film and music fans as well, hoping to experience this.

Brady: And we just started so the first announcement and the halls mentioned are only the very first ones that have signed on to do it. We have many, many more that are in touch with us that we’re figuring out the details with right now. These are just the ones that we were able to mention in the press release. You’ll see the breadth and scope of the concert tour expand all over the world very quickly. And not just for the first movie, but for all of the others after that – and not just in the first year.

One of the cool things about this genre is that it’s brand new. There are still many countries that have never done one of these before and utilized their concert hall for a performance like this. I don’t think you can think about it as a traditional tour that begins and ends. It’s going to be this ever-expanding celebration. As more people see it in a concert hall or read about it occurring in a concert hall, then want it to come to their city and reach out to us to see if we can bring it in. It’s going to be much more organic and more of a global celebration rather than a tour that begins in January and ends in March.

SnitchSeeker: Will you just do one performance in each city, or will you stay multiple days?
Justin:
The world premiere with the Philadelphia Orchestra will be a singular performance. They have a 13,000 person capacity at the venue. Our hope is to sell that one out. But generally speaking, these projects will sit for anywhere between two to four performances for a singular film, depending on the hall. The idea is to perhaps do two or three films in a season. Or do one film in a season and bring it back after the eight-year cycle. So it will vary widely, but it’s safe to say that each engagement is a quality engagement.

Each film concert will come with a series of anywhere between two to four or five concerts per film when it sits in a city, as an average. There’s so many interesting ways to celebrate this. We’re asking, “How can we do this perhaps in Orlando and sit in one of their great concert halls for a good week long?” Maybe each film individually or an entire series in one or two weeks. It so close and connected to Universal Studios Orlando and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. With this type of a franchise, we’re only limited by our imagination.

Brady: Usually when we do these, it’s one to three nights per city. The same movie will play over three nights so everybody in the city gets a chance to see it. With Harry Potter it’s going to be wonderfully different. These cities may choose to do eight nights with a different movie each night. They may choose to just do Sorcerer’s Stone for three nights and then bring back the next movie each month after that.

SnitchSeeker: Of the eight soundtracks, which is the most challenging to do?
Justin:
Oh my God, I don’t even know where to start with that. Each soundtrack, and I know Brady would agree with this, has amazingly unique attributes and do something totally different and powerful for each film. In the John Williams’ ones, it’ll be fun to start them out because it was the beginning of the franchise.

As you move through the amazing power of Patrick Doyle’s music to The Goblet of Fire and, of course, Nick Hooper’s music in the following two films, and Alexandre Desplat at the very end, Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 and 2 – they’re all unique in their own way. I love the chorale elements in Patrick Doyle’s for The Goblet of Fire. I love the elegance of Desplat’s music for Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 and 2.

It’s so very elegant and beautiful. And, of course, the iconic tune that John Williams came up with on that beautiful celeste instrument. One of the coolest things about this franchise is that in this format every score, at least from our side, we’re wildly passionate about. There’s something to love in all of these scores and I think that will translate to audiences.

Brady: As the characters grow up as each new school year happens, the tone of the books and the tone of the movies evolves – and the music evolved with that feeling. That’s one of the more amazing things about being to explore You see the music as applied to the same genre change and evolve with the tone, nature and complexity of the story, and the age of the characters as they grow up. It’s one of the more unique opportunities ever – to explore the evolution of a piece of music in film, and many pieces of music in film, that change and evolve with the storyline over so much time.

SnitchSeeker: What is your favorite piece from all the scores?
Justin:
One of my favorite cues from any of the Williams’ scores is the year one Quidditch match from the first film. It’s so wonderfully adventurous, tense and beautiful march. But one of the other cool things and one of my unique favorites - and it’s so super easy - is the Hogwarts march by Patrick Doyle for The Goblet of Fire. It’s like this German polka-esque thing that’s just so much fun. There’s so many styles. That’s one of the great things about this project.

SnitchSeeker: What do you hope fans will get out of watching these concerts?
Justin:
For me, I hope that they can go through a rewarding emotional journey. That’s why I fell in love with music to begin with. It made me feel good and emotionally up and down. So I hope that’s what they get out of it – a totally immersive emotional experience.

Brady: I hope that they reconnect with the purity of joy and imagination which people had with their first experience with Harry Potter. The music is an amazing conduit back to the feelings that people have for the series. I hope it reminds them why they love it. And why they love it with other people. Part of Harry Potter is that your friends have read it, your parents read it, your grandparents read it. I can’t think of another cultural experience in my lifetime where it crosses so many generations. I hope what people get out of the shows is to re-experience the sharing of harry Potter live with other people when they come to the venues to watch the movie.

SnitchSeeker: As the scores come out for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will you be doing them as well?
Justin:
Our hope is to continue to celebrate this world through this medium. I can only say I hope so. I don’t know the film or music. I’m sure that both will be amazing. I hope there’s an opportunity to collaborate in some way.

Brady: We hope so!

Full details on when and where to purchase tickets for the debut performance in Philadelphia this June will be available here later this month.
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Old 02-19-2016, 09:16 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Ah-ha! It seems like I was right, HP will live forever. And even if not by all these amazing projects, it will live in our hearts, I'm sure. I'll be gladly waiting for the announcement of the Portuguese leg of this tour congratulations!
Can't wait to experience live the emotional rollercoaster that this soundtrack always gave me.
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