Theme: Play and Stillness
One day I looked out of the window and observed the rain. I realized that I was so caught up in my work, I forgot to enjoy the sight of the most simple and peaceful natural phenomenon. As I was listening to the sound of the rain, I thought of how its melody can render me into a zen-like stage as if it makes me thinking that everything around me is slowing down up to a point where they become almost still.
Life is about motions and we perceive its existence due to the sudden changes which occur as accidents in the experiencing events. Even if things seem to not moving, they actual are moving but at a very slow speed or at a linear pace. Take the moon as an example. We often see it standing still but in fact it is orbiting around the Earth.
Repetition can cause the same effect. For instance, a routine is a set of habits repeating over a long period of time. In this case, it is the person’s mind that experiences stillness. He/she carries on with their lives according to the collection of tasks imprinted in their consciousness.
Sometimes, all it takes to freeze all surrounding movements is a long and tedious conversation. You are trying to be polite and anxious about how to end this time-consuming talk at the same time. You do not know what to do because you feel tired due to boredom. In that moment, your body is relaxing though your mind is troubled. As you are reaching your limit of sufferance, you have all your attention on what causing you the misery and forget about the world. This is when the world seems to become still.
With all of these notions in mind, I started to write a song using the sound of the rain as my reference.
I dust up my knowledge on musical theory and play with the piano keyboard. I need a visual representation for my music so I proceed to make a music video.
There are a couple of classical horror scenes in films use Beethoven’s Symphony No.5 or Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor to introduce the villains or monsters. This has become a stereotype for creepiness since these songs’ tempo and tone make them sound like thunder, describing the agony and frustration of isolated and evil souls. I take advantage on how the brain perceives and relates audio inputs to something it believes to share the similarities with the subjects in question. By referencing the rain, I increase and decrease tempo of my song according to the sound of rain then add in some bass clefs when there is thunder clap.
I compose a classical piano solo music video. I smash up the rain and the music together for a mood.
In cinematic production, music is often used as non-diegetic sounds to imply certain information about the settings, the atmosphere and the characters. For instance, in 2001: A Space Odyssey directed by Stanley Kubrick, the waltz music is used to depict the floating characteristic in space. Another example is in Jaws (1975) directed by Steven Spielberg, when the shark is lurking, a slow pace, mono-sound is playing. The pace increases with additional fast beats as the shark approaches the victim. The end goal of this usage is to manipulate the audience’s emotions.
The notion of play for the topic is Melody as I play with the piano keyboard to select the right tunes to compose my song.