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ASCAP, BMI Schedule Workshops for Composers

Both are multi-week events and will culminate in live recording sessions at Los Angeles area studios.

Two major performance-rights organizations announced this week the launch of workshops designed to aid up-and-coming film and TV composers: ASCAP, for film scoring; and BMI, for conducting.

Both are multi-week events for which hundreds apply annually, and the two will culminate in live recording sessions at Los Angeles area studios later this month.

ASCAP began its 30th annual Film Scoring Workshop today, with Emmy-winning composer Richard Bellis as mentor and ASCAP film and TV executives Michael Todd and Jennifer Harmon producing.

It’s a comprehensive, four-week program that has proven a launching pad for many composers in the past, including Jim Dooley (“Pushing Daisies”), Rob Duncan (“Castle”), Matthew Margeson (the “Kingsman” movies), Cliff Martinez (“Drive”), Mateo Messina (“Juno”) and Austin Wintory (“Journey”).

This year’s 12 composers — chosen from nearly 400 applicants — include Shaun Crawford of Cape Town, South Africa; Damien Lane of Cambewarra, Australia; Kyle Laporte of Playa Del Rey, Calif.; Akos Lustyik of london; Jesi Nelson of Los Angeles; Vili Robert Ollila of Helsinki, Finland; Alexander Aaroen Pederson of Troms, Norway; Annie Rosevear of Los Angeles; Tim Schmalz of Marina Del Rey, Calif.; Fred Smith of Huntington Beach, Calif.; Flynn Hase Spence of London; and Mitchell Tanner of London.

“The workshop gives them the opportunity to learn important business skills from some of the best in the industry,” said Shawn LeMone, ASCAP senior vice president of membership, film & TV. “In many cases, it has been instrumental in connecting composers with opportunities to score for major Hollywood film and TV projects.”

As part of the workshop, the participants will spend a day with composer Tom Holkenborg, aka Junkie XL (“Mad Max: Fury Road”). On July 31, each will get to conduct a 65-piece orchestra on the Newman scoring stage at 20th Century-Fox with legendary engineer Armin Steiner as scoring mixer.

Tomorrow, BMI will begin its 21st annual Conducting Workshop, taught by Grammy-winning composer-conductor Lucas Richman (whose film-conducting experience includes the Oscar-nominated music for “As Good As It Gets,” “The Village,” “The Manchurian Candidate” and “Seven”).

This year’s participants include film and TV composers Alexander Bornstein, Andy Forsberg, Peter Karr, Cindy O’Connor, Genevieve Vincent, Ben Bromfield, Timo Chen and Oumi Kapila.

Past participants have included Nathan Barr (“The Americans”), Jeff Beal (“House of Cards”), Laura Karpman (“Underground”), Rolfe Kent (“Sideways”), Christopher Lennertz (“Lost in Space”), Lolita Ritmanis (“Teen Titans”) and Fil Eisler (“Empire”).

Sessions will be held at both BMI’s Los Angeles office and composer Blake Neely’s North Hollywood studio. Their final session will be conducting a 32-piece orchestra at Barr’s newly built Bandrika studio in Tarzana on July 21.

Ray Yee, BMI assistant vice president – creative, for film, TV and visual media, expressed pride in the program and said “its success through the years can be attributed to Lucas’ skill as a conductor, combined with his passion to teach.”

Richman won BMI’s Classic Contribution Award in 2007. He is currently music director for the Bangor Symphony Orchestra and recently completed 12 years as music director for the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra.

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