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In late January, Professor Pat Pattison delivered another memorable master class on the songwriting process. Held at Los Angeles's famous recording studio the Village Recorder, the session examined the rewriting process by dissecting a song by alumna Marga Lane Rojas '09 as well as one by Jeremy Blietz '93. Noted singer/songwriter Steve Seskin assisted Pattison, and the collaborative discussion produced illuminating results.
Composer Roger Bellon '75 recently completed recording the score to Iron Cross, the final cinematic performance by actor Roy Scheider, at famed Abbey Road Studios. As a huge Beatles fan, Bellon noted that "conducting the London Symphony Orchestra is simply magnificent, and scoring at Abbey Road is like working in a living museum."
Bellon's opera Highlander: A Celtic Opera was also recently performed in its entirety on Radio Aktywne in Warsaw, Poland. Bellon, who scored the hit television series Highlander, noted that this was the first radio performance of the opera. For more, visit www.facebook.com/highlanderacelticopera.
In January 2010, composer Sharon Farber '97 conducted her music in a special concert dedicated to Martin Luther King Jr. in North Carolina. She was also commissioned to compose a new piece for the Laguna Beach Music Festival, and in February, her choral music (published by the Lorenz Corporation) was featured at the American Choral Directors Association conference in Philadelphia. Her work commissioned by the Pacific Serenades was also premiered in March, and Farber is working on a large-scale choral work for the prestigious Israeli Moran Choir. In addition, this summer Farber will reprise her role as a composer in residence at the Beverly Hills International Music Festival.
Fans of The Simpsons may know that the 450th episode of the Fox series recently aired. Alf Clausen '66 has scored more than 430 of these episodes, earning 22 Emmy nominations and winning twice for his original music. His sessions typically feature 35 to 40 musicians, bucking the current trend of electronic scores for most TV shows. "The producers were very wise in choosing a live orchestra, because we go through so many styles in an episode," Clausen says. "We can go anywhere musically and make it work quickly and efficiently."
Motion Picture Sound Editors recently announced the winners of the 2010 Golden Reel Awards. Daniel Colman '95 won two awards for his editing work on Battlestar Gallactica, and earned another five nominations to round out an impressive year. David Van Slyke '82 garnered yet another Golden Reel nomination for his work on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
Peter Hastings '84 is currently the executive producer of the Kung Fu Panda television series for DreamWorks Animation and Nickelodeon. In scoring the episodes, he uses the Track Team, which includes Jeremy Zuckerman '97.
That's all for now, stay in touch,
Peter Gordon '78
Director of Berklee Center in LA