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SATYAJIT RAY : The true Indian legend (Page 3)

punjini IF-Dazzler
punjini
punjini

Joined: 19 January 2006
Posts: 3277

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:31am | IP Logged
Satyajit Ray is one of those persons who never fails to make me proud of being an Indian. What masterpieces he made! He never bothered about the commercial aspect or tried to make movies for the lowest common denomiator. We had to rise to his level. You need to see every Ray movie at least thrice - to appreciate all the layers within the movie. My personal favourites are Charulata, Pratidwandi and Mahanagar.

apparaohoare IF-Rockerz
apparaohoare
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Posts: 7199

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:31am | IP Logged
Originally posted by jayc1234

Originally posted by SHUBHAMSG

Satyajit Ray : The only INDIAN ever to have received an ACADEMY AWARD .

Also I think the number of awards ( DOMESTIC or FOREIGN ) he received is more than all the awards received by the present film directors . That's how good he is .

OH and BTW , SATYAJIT RAY Bwas also one of the greatest music directors of his time , he used to design the costumes and the sets and also wrote the dialogues himself . He was trully a GENIUS in ALL fields.

And how can we forget the great writer Satyajit Ray - I think all bengali kids grow up reading 'Felu'da' and 'Prof. Shanku'... Brilliant characters.. brilliant descriptions.. As a kid, I could read Felu'da stories again and again - he was my first hero! As I grew up, I found that the Felu'da stories were lovely travelogues as well.. No one else has described those places so vividly!

And just not the writing, the marvellous illustrations in all his books were all done by Ray himself... I read somewhere that the initial sketches of Felu'da were different from what he looks like in the later books.. It seems, Ray was so much influenced by Soumitra Chatterjee who played Felu'da in Shonar Kella, that his later books actually potrayed Felu'da more like the actor....

HATS OFF TO THE GENIUS Clap

 

How could you all forget his one dozen short stories series, like Ek dajon gappo, aro ek dajon, aro baro, abaro baro, eker pithe dui etc etc. 

 

 

soulsoup IF-Dazzler
soulsoup
soulsoup

Joined: 20 January 2006
Posts: 3489

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:34am | IP Logged
Some free Ray MP# download at emusic.com:
http://www.emusic.com/artist/11573/11573346.html

I have Gupi Gayan Bagha Byen CD - I can rip MP3s - anyone interested?
soulsoup IF-Dazzler
soulsoup
soulsoup

Joined: 20 January 2006
Posts: 3489

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:36am | IP Logged
Originally posted by apparaohoare

Originally posted by jayc1234

Originally posted by SHUBHAMSG

Satyajit Ray : The only INDIAN ever to have received an ACADEMY AWARD .

Also I think the number of awards ( DOMESTIC or FOREIGN ) he received is more than all the awards received by the present film directors . That's how good he is .

OH and BTW , SATYAJIT RAY Bwas also one of the greatest music directors of his time , he used to design the costumes and the sets and also wrote the dialogues himself . He was trully a GENIUS in ALL fields.

And how can we forget the great writer Satyajit Ray - I think all bengali kids grow up reading 'Felu'da' and 'Prof. Shanku'... Brilliant characters.. brilliant descriptions.. As a kid, I could read Felu'da stories again and again - he was my first hero! As I grew up, I found that the Felu'da stories were lovely travelogues as well.. No one else has described those places so vividly!

And just not the writing, the marvellous illustrations in all his books were all done by Ray himself... I read somewhere that the initial sketches of Felu'da were different from what he looks like in the later books.. It seems, Ray was so much influenced by Soumitra Chatterjee who played Felu'da in Shonar Kella, that his later books actually potrayed Felu'da more like the actor....

HATS OFF TO THE GENIUS Clap

 

How could you all forget his one dozen short stories series, like Ek dajon gappo, aro ek dajon, aro baro, abaro baro, eker pithe dui etc etc. 

 

 



I have all of them!! Smile
soulsoup IF-Dazzler
soulsoup
soulsoup

Joined: 20 January 2006
Posts: 3489

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:39am | IP Logged

Satyajit Ray on Music in his Movies

Satyajit Ray and Lindsay Anderson

Satyajit Ray was interviewed by Lindsay Anderson at the NFT, in 1969 or 1970.

In this interview, the director discusses his early films and influences, the novelists he has adapted, and the evolution and future of his film-making.


Q: Your first scores were written by Ravi Shankar?

SR: Yes. Ever since Two Daughters I've been composing my own music. The composers I'd used previously were not film composers. They were concert performers. Ravi Shankar had done a lot of ballet compositions.

LA: Did he do The River?

SR: No, but the sitar you hear at the beginning of the film was my cameraman - he's quite a gifted sitarist.

[Laughter]

He's also in a scene playing the sitar.

I had difficulty working with them because they were friends and I was starting to get too many ideas of my own. Obviously a composer wouldn't like to be guided beyond a certain point and I didn't want to jeopardise the friendship so I decided to try my own hand. I had no previous experience, but music has been my first love for quite a long time. I was interested in both Western and Indian classical music.

It was extremely difficult in the early stages, and what I would write would sound atrocious in the orchestra, so I scrapped a lot. I wrote some music for The Postmaster, but I didn't use any of it because it didn't sound right. But then I developed a certain proficiency.

LA: Does one write music down with the same series of notation as in the West?

SR: There is no system of orchestration in Indian music, so what's written down is a kind of [inaudible]

LA: Do they improvise much?

SR: Well, I would describe certain moods to Ravi Shankar, he rarely saw the films, but he would have the main motif in mind. So we had him do six or seven of these motifs on different instruments at various tempos. Then I had him play three minute pieces of sitar music and some pieces of orchestration that was improvised in different moods. When it came to actually laying down the tracks I found I was a little short of music, I needed more. Some of it was done by my cameraman. The music in The Confectioner was him and not Ravi Shankar. Ravi Shankar had some difficulties in the States because everyone would ask him to play the music from The Confectioner and he didn't know it!

[Laughter]

LA: So when you're doing your music, do you do it closely to the picture?

SR: I know the picture so well that I don't have to look at it.

The conception of background music is changing. You use less and less of it these days. In The World of Apu, Ravi Shankar used teacups and things like that. Percussive. With the detective film, I didn't enjoy the story so I decided to have some fun with the music. I played some instruments and recorded them at different speeds and it was all synthetic. All done in my room, and no-one can work out what is being played, but it has the desired effect.

LA: When you use a musical ensemble for a score, how many people are involved?

SR: The largest number was about thirty. Generally it's about sixteen - you need a string section. I mix Indian instruments with Western instruments all the time.

LA: You can do Western notation?

SR: Yes. Some of my musicians don't know Western notation, so I sometimes have to do an Indian version too. I have an assistant who's also a flautist and who conducts.

LA: Had you written many songs before this film?

SR: I wrote the lyrics to a very traditional piece of music, there's hundreds of versions.

[Inaudible question]

SR:...Particularly in the final stages I always find that I'm rushed. It's dangerous when you're rushed in the editing stage, most of my early films are flawed in the cutting. There are some very serious blemishes that, if I had had more time, wouldn't be there. One of the reasons why some of my films seem so slow is because the soundtrack isn't expressive enough - maybe they need more sound or music.

LA: Do you have special dubbing editors?

SR: No, the same editing team.



apparaohoare IF-Rockerz
apparaohoare
apparaohoare

Joined: 12 January 2006
Posts: 7199

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 8:50am | IP Logged
Originally posted by soulsoup

Originally posted by apparaohoare

How could you all forget his one dozen short stories series, like Ek dajon gappo, aro ek dajon, aro baro, abaro baro, eker pithe dui etc etc. 



I have all of them!! Smile

Anol da,

Both me and my Dad are huge fans of Satyajit Ray.  I have all the books that Satyajit Ray has ever written and published, and also have all the movies that Ray has directed.  When Satyajit Ray passed away, Doordarsan telecasted lot of his movies on TV.  I had recorded all of them, and now my Dad transferred them to CD's.  So I have some of his rare collection.  I also have his telefilm "Sadgati".   But everything is in India. Unhappy

 

 

 

 

 

soulsoup IF-Dazzler
soulsoup
soulsoup

Joined: 20 January 2006
Posts: 3489

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 9:01am | IP Logged
Originally posted by apparaohoare

Originally posted by soulsoup

Originally posted by apparaohoare

How could you all forget his one dozen short stories series, like Ek dajon gappo, aro ek dajon, aro baro, abaro baro, eker pithe dui etc etc. 



I have all of them!! Smile

Anol da,

Both me and my Dad are huge fans of Satyajit Ray.  I have all the books that Satyajit Ray has ever written and published, and also have all the movies that Ray has directed.  When Satyajit Ray passed away, Doordarsan telecasted lot of his movies on TV.  I had recorded all of them, and now my Dad transferred them to CD's.  So I have some of his rare collection.  I also have his telefilm "Sadgati".   But everything is in India. Unhappy

 



Next time you visit India (Kolkata?) - you can get all his works in DVD now - I got 15 of them during my last visit .


soulsoup IF-Dazzler
soulsoup
soulsoup

Joined: 20 January 2006
Posts: 3489

Posted: 28 March 2006 at 9:09am | IP Logged
Satyajit Roy on Music

Extract from - Revisiting Satyajit Ray An Interview with a Cinema Master


From 1961 onwards, starting with Teen Kanya , you have composed the music for your own films. Before concluding, could you address the subject of music in general and film music in particular?

Yes, of course. Music has been my first love for many, many years — perhaps from the time I was thirteen or fourteen. As a child, I had a toy gramophone and there were always plenty of records in our home. Then later, at Presidency College and while I was at the University of Shantiniketan, I became seriously interested in Western classical music. I did not have very much money in those days, so obviously it was a question of collecting slowly, one movement of a symphony or a concerto at a time.

When I started working, I began to take music even more seriously. I not only began to collect records, but I also got into the habit of buying musical scores. I remember there was a shop in Bombay in those days — S. Rose and Company — which used to sell miniature or pocketbook German scores. These became bedside reading for me. During the day I would listen to the records with the scores in hand, and then when I read the scores again at night, the music would all come back to me. This is also when I started to become familiar with staff notation.

Why primarily the interest in Western classical music?

You see, our home has always had a tradition of listening to Rabindrasangeet and Indian classical music. My uncle was a great music lover, and the promising new musicians in those days would come regularly to our place and perform. So, since I was familiar with Indian music — from these private performances and from going to public concerts — I did not feel that there was anything more I needed to do in order to learn about it.

With Western music, on the other hand, I experienced the excitement of discovering something new, completely uncharted territory: Beethoven and others whom I had only read about, doing something that did not exist in our music. I shared this enthusiasm with several friends, and I remember that the salesmen at Bevan & Co., in Dalhousie Square, used to be quite astonished that three or four young Bengalis could be so interested in Western classical music.

In 1966 you said, "Of all the stages of filmmaking, I find it is the orchestration of the music that requires my greatest attention. At the moment, it is still a painstaking process."

Well, you know, I get involved in the composing of music only once a year or so. If I were a professional composer, perhaps I would have a greater facility for this work. You also have to remember that I was completely self-taught in the area of music. I would jot down musical ideas for a film in shorthand form, so scoring became quite a trial. Now, with experience, the whole process has become somewhat easier for me. Even so, I can't put a musical idea on paper as quickly or as smoothly as a professional composer can. And this work, for me, is very time-consuming and tension-inducing. The tension is sometimes increased when the musicians don't play as I want them to, because they are used to playing very differently — especially here in Bengal.

Did this sense of not being too sure of yourself musically, early on, have anything to do with the fact that, in Pather Panchali (right), Ravi Shankar was one of the few professionals you used?

I thought of using Ravi Shankar not primarily because he was a close personal acquaintance with whom I would feel comfortable working. I thought it would be a good idea to work with someone like him, who would be able to introduce a fresh approach — quite unlike conventional Bengali film composers at the time.

How was it to work with a famous musician like Ravi Shankar?

Even at that time, Shankar was quite busy with his foreign tours. I had written to him in Bombay — or was it Delhi? — that I was thinking of making Pather Panchali and would like him to do the music. Then I went to see him when he came to Calcutta. He sort of hummed for me a melodic line — a folk tune of sorts — and I thought it was just right for Pather Panchali. So that became the film's musical theme — entirely Shankar's contribution.

Despite your interest in Western classical music, then, you have an aversion to using it in your films.

Oh, yes, that's right. A lot of films have used Western classical music, and not always with success. You know that Bo Widerberg's Elvira Madigan uses, again and again, parts of Mozart's Concerto 453 in G Major. Later on, I found the LP called "The Elvira Madigan Concerto." That's terrible! Scandalous, even. Because, you see, then you are assuming that the film will rise to the level of the music; but what often happens is that the music is brought down to the level of the film! Particularly in this case, the two don't mix — like water and oil. Yes, I know that Stanley Kubrick used the Ninth Symphony played on a synthesizer in A Clockwork Orange; and I suppose it works for this film, though I wouldn't want to possess a record of it. And Kubrick has done some other daring musical things that just come off — like his use of "The Blue Danube" in 2001: A Space Odyssey. I myself wouldn't mind using a relatively unknown piece of Baroque music — something by Couperin or Scarlatti, for instance — in a film if I can find the right subject.

I hate films, by the way, that are drenched with over-romantic music of the kind you find in some of those lush Hollywood films from the early 1940s. You got someone expensive for your music director, like Max Steiner or Alfred Newman, so you let him drown the film in music. You see, most of the American directors — with the exception of four or five, like William Wyler, Billy Wilder, Frank Capra, and George Stevens — had no control over a film after they finished shooting it. I asked John Huston, whose films are so wonderful, about his Treasure of the Sierra Madre, which is absolutely ruined by its music. And he said he had no control over the score; perhaps also, he's not musical, as some directors aren't, and the producers took advantage of this fact.

So I gather that you feel background music is really an extraneous element in films — that one should be able to express oneself without it.

My belief is that, yes, a film should be able to dispense with music. But half the time we are using music because we are not confident that certain changes of mood will be understood by the audience — so we underline these changes with mood music. I would like to do without music if such a thing were possible, but I don't think I'll ever be able to do it. I will say that I have used very little music in my contemporary films and as much natural sound as possible.

Ray on the setInitially, I did feel that film needed music partly because long stretches of silence tend to bore the audience: It's as simple as that. With music, the scene becomes "shorter" automatically. And in certain types of films, music is a must unless you have a very rich natural soundtrack. Then there's the type of film where music is needed just to hide the rough edges. You know, De Sica's earlier pictures — Bicycle Thieves, Miracle in Milan, Shoeshine, Umberto D. — were very grainy films, shot at a time when they were using five different kinds of black-and-white stock, and when shooting conditions were terrible, right after the Second World War. Not that the cutting or camera movement is bad — De Sica's a master in those departments — but some "rough" scenes simply cried out for music, and he had a marvelous composer, Cicognini, who provided it.

In general, let's just say that whether you are going to use music or sound effects depends on the mood of a scene. If a specific sound effect is crucial, I don't even think of using music in its place. And when you are trying to control time, to maintain real or chronological time, I would say the less music there is, the better, though sound effects can help a lot in this instance. When time is broken up, by contrast, music helps to preserve a linear flow.


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