Over the course of a few months in late 2017 and early 2018, I wrote an original composition for my close friend Shahin Alirkan's graduating thesis film, We Hopeful Few. The film is an abstract story about a boy and his dream to explore the cosmos, produced within the Computer Arts program at the School of Visual Arts (SVA).
I had never done a complete soundtrack for a piece before, including the musical piece and sound design, so this was a formidable challenge. We started working on the music very early on, so it developed alongside the visuals over the course of the production process, weaving the sound together with the overall atmosphere of the film. The very first version of the track used in rough cuts was performed on acoustic piano, which was later transcribed and turned into an ensemble of electronic elements and strings, resulting in a wholesome, emotional composition worthy of the stunning visuals.
Perhaps the most exciting part of the process was recording live strings with the help of violinist Iryna Kit and cellist Jillian Blythe. Originally prototyped with Native Instrument's Session Strings, the difference was night and day and truly brought out the emotional capacity of the piece, particularly in the climax towards the end of the film. I am very proud of what was accomplished in this project, and have learned a lot about music composition, sound design, and live sound recording. I hope it won't be long before I find myself in a studio working on something similar again.