Sándor Török (SABAM Award WSA 2016): “Thanks to Film Fest Gent, SABAM and the World Soundtrack Awards for giving film music a prominent place“
This year, a young Hungarian composer was awarded the SABAM award during the WSA, traditionally ending Film Fest Gent in style.
At age seven, Sándor Török’s first musical passion became the violin. Later he discovered the bass, which was love at first ‘sound’ and became his “main instrument for life”.
Sándor lives and works in the Swiss capital Bern. He plays, among others, with the Neuchâtel Symphonic Ensemble and the 21st Century Symphony Orchestra, with which he regularly performs live film music. The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Indiana Jones, Star Trek and Pirates of the Caribbean, in concert halls such as the Royal Albert Hall and KKL Luzern, are absolute highlights in his career.
These experiences and admiration for the strength of interaction between music and film fuelled his interest in film composition further.
Sándor: Playing for some years now in a film music orchestra I decided in spring of 2016, that I would like to try myself out as a composer. I wrote some demo tracks and tried to make contact with directors and game developers, but I hardly received any answer from them. I realized that first of all I need to build up some kind of portfolio and rescore film excerpts, to have material which I can show them. Meanwhile on the internet I stumbled upon the WSAwards competition for young composers and being a fan – as a child – of this series (The Saint), I thought it is a great opportunity to write music for it.
As crazy as it sounds, this submission was my first work to score a film excerpt.
I almost couldn’t believe when I got the news that I was one of the three finalists, nominated for the SABAM Award. During my stay in Ghent I attended panels, talks and seminars about film music, and was a great way to get insights into the film industry and the scoring workflow of different composers.
I would like to thank to Film Fest Gent, SABAM and the World Soundtrack Awards for giving film music a prominent place – which is unfortunately often undervalued – supporting not only the established composers, but also the next generation. For young composers it’s also a rare occasion to hear their music live, especially with a full blown orchestra and such great names like Dirk Brossé and the Brussels Philharmonic.
I am deeply honored to be the winner of the SABAM Best Young International Composer Award of the World Soundtrack Awards. Being chosen from 91 applicants from all over the world is a strong confirmation that I am on the right track and to keep on doing what I like the most, composing.
For me this award has even more value, knowing that the jury consisted of international film industry professionals with various backgrounds. Speaking with them I realized that the level of the competition was really high and they had hard time to choose the winner, so I would have not been surprised if Enrica Sciandrone or Nathan Glenn, one of the other nominees would have won the prize.
With this award in my “pocket” I got to know a lot of film composers, directors and some agents. I am definitely looking forward what the future will bring me...
(c) Jeroen Willems
Sándor is a jack-of-all-trades. Besides his work as a freelance musician and bass player in several Balkan and pop bands, he also works as a web developer.
(c) Lausanne photo
Award for best score for Hans Helewaut
The young Hungarian was not the only prize winner that evening. One of our Belgian film composers, Hans Helewaut (on the right in the picture below), returned home with the award for ‘Best Original Score for a Belgian Production’. He wrote the award-winning music for the acclaimed motion capture film Cafard of Jan Bultheel, the true story of a forgotten war history.
The soundtrack was recorded by the Brussels Philharmonic at Galaxy Studios in Mol.
Both the film and the music received enthusiastic reactions from press and professionals, and experienced international attention as well, with selections at various festivals.
“The director and I have known each other for a long time, but we had never worked together on a fiction project”, Hans says on brusselsphilharmonic.be. “From the start, Jan had an epic orchestral score in mind, which I then pursued as well. The travel component in the film, along with the emotional journey of the main characters, called for several, sometimes short themes. The fun thing about film music is that the film itself guides your pen and makes you take certain paths. For the orchestration and recording of the music, I had the pleasure of working with Michel Bisceglia, the Brussels Philharmonic and Galaxy Studios, a dream scenario for a composer.”
(c) Jeroen Willems
On 19 October, the World Soundtrack Academy announced the winners of the 2016 World Soundtrack Awards in Capitole, Ghent. Film Fest Gent celebrated its 16th edition of the World Soundtrack Awards by focusing on television scores. Brussels Philharmonic and the Flemish Radio Choir performed scores from the most beloved television shows in recent history, conducted by Music Director Dirk Brossé.
Best Original Score for a Belgian Production
'Cafard' by Hans Helewaut
Best Original Song written directly for a Film
‘None of Them Are You’ from ‘Anomalisa’
music & lyrics by Carter Burwell & Charlie Kaufman
Discovery of the Year
Joe Kraemer for 'Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation'
'Carol' by Carter Burwell
Television Composer of the Year
Film Composer of the Year
Lifetime Achievement Award
(c) Jeroen Willems
The World Soundtrack Academy aims at supporting film, and now television music, sound design, composers and their worldwide promotion. In fifteen years time, the membership of the WSAcademy has grown into a group of 370 international film (music) professionals deciding on the nominees for the annual World Soundtrack Awards through several rounds of voting.
(Bronnen: The World Soundtrack Academy en Brusselsphilharmonic.be)