The Sundance Film Festival’s 2021 virtual Main Street will play host to a series of conversations about music and the movies, hosted by first-time festival partner Film Music House, with Mary J. Blige, Rufus Wainwright and Colin Stetson (pictured above) among those taking part in the streamed chats Jan. 28 through Feb. 3.
Blige will join Nova Wav and DJ Camper in a conversation on songwriting for films. Wainwright will participate in a panel on the music of the film “Rebel Hearts” with veteran music supervisor Tracy McKnight and Ariel Marx. A panel about music auteurs will feature Stetson as well as Bryce Dessner of the National and Alex Somers.
The confab’s keynote conversations will spotlight Mychael Danna, Jeff Beal, Dan Romer, Miriam Cuter and Rob Simonsen.
Other programs include composers Dustin O’Halloran and Volker Bertelmann and director Francis Lee talking about the music of “Ammonite”; composer Tamar-kali and director Josephine Decker on the score for “Shirley”; and Joseph Trapanese in discussion about “Tron: Legacy” 10 years on. Also on board for discussion are Frances Lee Marius De Vries, “Minari” composer Emile Mosseri, Jongnic Bontemps, Uno Helmersson, T. Griffin and Nathan Halpern, among many others.
A “Scoring for the Small Screen” panel will look at the music for “The Queen’s Gambit,” with Carlos Rafael Rivera, and “Lovecraft Country,” with Laura Karpman and Raphael Saadiq.
Composer Jay Wadley will lead a short performance of music from Charlie Kaufman’s “I’m Thinking of Ending Things,” and Wendy and Lisa are also on board for a mini-concert.
Those who represent composers will gather on a panel featuring manager Tim Husom (Redbird Music) and talent agents Alexander Vangelos (First Artists Management), Sarah Kovacs (Kraft-Engel Management) and Jake Kozarec (Fortress Talent Management).
“We are excited to amplify the importance of film music at this year’s Sundance Film Festival,” Film Music House programmer Thomas Mikusz said in a statement. “We have been attending Sundance and other major festivals over the past decade and have seen more and more creatives interested in film music and have recognized their yearning to hear more from the people that create music, their process, inspirations and also about their communication tools with filmmakers. We are especially happy to partner with the Alliance for Women Film Composers this year on several panels, highlighting the work of women composers at Sundance.”
White Bear PR’s Chandler Poling collaborated with Mikusz in curating and producing the series. “We would like to extend our gratitude to Sundance Institute and its director of film music, Peter Golub, who have always been strong supporters and mentors for young composers… We hope audiences around the world will enjoy.”
Also falling under the Film Music House umbrella at this year’s virtual festival will be networking events, daily listening lounges with music from indie films and even “dance parties.”
The full lineup of extracurricular events at this year’s Sundance can be found at https://village.festival.sundance.org/.