the Filmfestival is comming to Ghent and this time I'am not gonna miss it!
The Ghent Film Festival — Where music sets the tone

The Ghent Film Festival was established in 1974 as a students' film festival, and has since developed into one of Europe's most prominent film events. Every year in October, the festival presents some 120 features and 50 shorts from all across the world. A range of different film programs are showcased, attracting over 100,000 viewers each year. The International Federation of Film Producers Associations (IFFPA) recognises this festival as a competitive festival primarily geared towards the 'impact of music on film'. There are 4 awards up for grabs and around 15 entrants.

With its focus on film music, the Ghent Film Festival has its own unique place in international festivals. Every year, the festival organises film music concerts, giving composers of film scores the platform they deserve. Composers such as Ennio Morricone, Gabriel Yared, Elmer Bernstein, Michael Kamen, Patrick Doyle, Howard Shore, Georges Delerue, Hans Zimmer, Maurice Jarre, Craig Armstrong, Harry-Gregson Williams, Michael Danna, Gustavo Santaolalla are some of the many film music legends who have already taken the stage at Ghent.

Since 2001, the Ghent Film Festival has also organised the World Soundtrack Awards, the most prestigious soundtrack awards in the world. Each year, the best soundtrack composers are honoured and receive international recognition for their work. This pioneering role has certainly had an impact. Ghent has grown into a meeting point for established and up-and-coming musical talent and ever greater numbers of festivals play soundtracks from the wings. Since 2004, even the European Film Academy – encouraged by the Ghent Film Festival - has honoured the best European soundtrack composers.

Trade paper
Variety placed the festival in it's top 50 must attend festivals of the world because of this focus on (film)music. American financial news paper The Wall Street Journal called the festival one of the five European Film Festivals with character!

Yet there is more to the Ghent Film Festival than just soundtracks alone. Every year, numerous international guests from the world of film flock to Ghent to present their films to the general public. Over the past years, the festival has welcomed filmmakers such as Kathleen Turner, Viggo Mortensen, David Cronenberg, Mike Leigh, François Ozon, Jeanne Moreau, Gina Lollobrigida, Tom Tykwer, Lord Richard Attenborough, Todd Haynes, Sir Peter Ustinov, Walter Hill, Danny Glover, Sidney Pollack, Jane Birkin, Luc Besson, Mike Figgis, Morgan Freeman, Faith Akin, Andy Garcia, Melanie Griffith, Robert Altman, Juliette Binoche, Sandra Bullock, Brad Pitt, Ken Loach and Michael Haneke.

In addition to the screenings, the Ghent Film Festival also organises film-related exhibitions. Thus the prestigious Stanley Kubrick exhibition, which was previously shown in Berlin, Melbourne and Frankfurt-am-Main, was brought to Ghent before other world cities such as Rome, Paris and London. Film fanatics have also been able to see exhibitions of film maker Peter Greenaway, animation film maker Raoul Servais, and the large exhibition Cités-Cinés with over 450,000 visitors. The Ghent Film Festival will continue to keep a close watch on international film developments in order to organise a festival that is as captivating as possible. To this end, a fresh, young team works hard day after day.

The 36th edition of the Ghent Film Festival is scheduled for October 6th-17th, 2009. Once again 'The impact of music on film' is the overall theme. More than 200 films will be shown at Kinepolis Gent, Sphinx, Studio Skoop and Arts Centre Vooruit.



17/10 20:00-22:00 in Muziekcentrum De Bijloke Gent

The composers Alexandre Desplat and Marvin Hamlisch will be the guests of honour at the 9th World Soundtrack Awards, the key event of the 36th Ghent Film Festival on Saturday 17 October in Music Centre De Bijloke in Ghent. The Brussels Philharmonic will be playing music from The Girl with the Pearl Earring, The Queen, The Painted Veil and Lust Caution among others. The American composer Marvin Hamlisch, who created unforgettable music for films such as The Way We Were and The Sting, will receive the World Soundtrack Lifetime Achievement Award.

The presentation of the World Soundtrack Awards and the accompanying concert of film music is an annual highpoint for lovers of film music. The international film music world will be there in Ghent to hear the best film music of the moment performed live by the Brussels Philharmonic. This year the programme will include music by Alexandre Desplat and Marvin Hamlisch.

Alexandre Desplat is part of the new class of French film music composers and made his reputation in 2003 with the soundtrack for The Girl with the Pearl Earring. This was followed by impressive scores for films that included Birth, Syriana, The Queen and The Painted Veil. He won the Golden Globe in 2007 for the soundtrack of the latter. The same year he was named Film Composer of the Year at the 7th World Soundtrack Awards. On Saturday 17 October, the Brussels Philharmonic, under the direction of Alexandre Desplat himself, will perform the music from The Girl with the Pearl Earring, The Queen, The Painted Veil, Lust Caution, Birth, The Golden Compass and Benjamin Button.

In addition to Alexandre Desplat, the American composer
Marvin Hamlisch will also take the spotlight. He will receive a World Soundtrack Lifetime Achievement Award for the contributions he has made during his rich career. Hamlisch is a much-lauded composer and arranger who has composed music for films, musicals and television. He won three Oscars, two for The Way We Were by Sydney Pollack with Barbra Streisand and one for the music forThe Sting by George Roy Hill with Paul Newman. Hamlisch also wrote the music for the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me and for the famous musical A Chorus Line. Together with composer Richard Rodgers he is the only artist to have won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, a Tony and a Pulitzer Prize. Other winners of the World Soundtrack Lifetime Achievement Award include Angelo Badalamenti, Mikis Theodorakis, Peer Raben, Maurice Jarre, Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, Alan & Marilyn Bergman, Sir George Martin and Elmer Bernstein.

Young film music talent is also represented with the composer
Marc Streitenfeld who carried off the World Soundtrack Discovery Award last year with his soundtrack for American Gangster by Ridley Scott. The Brussels Philharmonic under the direction of Dirk Brossé will also play music by the winner of the first composition competition organised by the World Soundtrack Academy for young European composers with the support of Sabam.

Tickets for the World Soundtrack Awards Ceremony and Concert are now available. All tickets (€75/€55) are reception afterwards included, in presence of the composers. Please mail todaniella@filmfestival.be for more info.

Official site: World Soundtrack Awards Ceremony & Concert

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