SILENT FILM CONCERTS         prima vista quartet

 

The Prima Vista Quartet, led by artistic director and composer Baudime Jam, has become a leader in the rarified world of film concerts (silent film musical accompaniment, called cine-concerts in French). Together, Jam and the quartet have explored silent cinema genres as diverse as slapstick, expressionism, social realism, historical melodrama, swashbuckler, war movie, cartoon and documentary, as expressed in French, American, German, Russian and Chinese film productions.

Live music for silent pictures

«...the best silent film accompaniment I've heard. Festival programmers in search of a sure-fire crowd pleaser that melds high art with pop art should definitely take note, as it were. »


Lisa Nesselson (Variety)

Baudime Jam’s first composition for silent film was completed in 1999 for "The General" (1926) and was followed by music scores for four short films in 2001. Additional scores were written for "Nosferatu" (1922) in 2002, "The Black Pirate" (1926) in 2004, two other short films in 2005, "Orphans of the Storm" (1921) in 2008, "The Goddess" (1934) and "The New Babylon" (1929) in 2010, with Studies on Paris(1928) and Two Stars in the Milky Way (1931) in 2012, two more shorts in 2013, The Great War (1915-18) and "Wings" (1927) in 2014, and three new short slapstick comedies in 2015. He has recently completed an orchestral score for "Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde".


Respectful of the aesthetic of each film, the Prima Vista Quartet has performed their silent film accompaniment for nearly twenty years in France and abroad, all with the original scores composed by Baudime Jam. Contrary to common misconception, the Prima Vista Quartet does not accompany silent films with arrangements of classical, baroque, contemporary, jazz, rock or ethnic music, but with ... film music. The quartet believes that cinema has its own musical idiom and their film concerts performances offer a unique opportunity to experience an enhancement of its repertoire


Because music in film is the result of a meticulous and magical alliance with image, Prima Vista invites you to discover the full range of emotions of a string quartet at the service of the masterpieces of silent cinema. Each score is an invitation to indulge in a different and unique musical and cinematic world, in keeping with the diversity and uniqueness of each cinematographic work, in order to ensure consistency and compliance with the artistic intentions of the filmmakers.


The Prima Vista Quartet eschews modern technology (click tracks over earphones or monitors on stage with timings and cues) in favor of the live experience of pure hand-eye co-ordination and acoustic musicianship. The quartet sits to the side of the stage and violinist/composer Baudime Jam keeps cinematic images and the quartet’s music in expressive synchronization. Their music scores are composed and performed in the spirit of the era of the movie, to the point that audiences experience movie and music as one.








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