Fabio Bertagnolli talks melody, recognition, and scoring

Fabio, you won best music back in September 2017. What are up to now to get into the new year ?
I am currently composing the score for a short film. I have also been writing music for Velvet Green Music, a production music library based in Los Angeles. These days I have received a proposal to write the music for a TV mini-series, and I have some more projects in the horizon for the next coming months.

Cool ! How would you describe your own music, you own style?
Melody for me is really important.

“I often look for passionate and emotional melodies, supported by harmonies that I would describe as tonal,”

but with the introduction of innovative elements and the fusion of different genres. Recently somebody defined my music as “embracing a postmodern aesthetic without separation from the traditional fundamentals.”

What made you submit your work to the ATMA in the first place ? Looking for recognition, promotion, buzz?
I would say a little of everything you said. And the beauty of the ATMA is that you can submit a great variety of genres, so there is recognition and promotion for every kind of music.

Have you won any other prize or recognition for your music?
Yes. I won the Honorable Mention Awards at the “Film Scoring Competition at the Indie Gathering International Film Festival” with the score of a trailer, the Bronze Medal at the “Global Music Awards” with “Paradise”, a piece for orchestra. I have been waiting for the results of a couple of other composition competitions in Europe, where I am already in the semifinals. Furthermore I have also placed three other pieces in the semifinals (two) and final (one) of the ATMA !

Way to go… Listening to your Soundcloud, the piano seems to have a central place in your work. Is that correct ? How do you relate to that instrument?
For sure piano has an important role in my music. Piano is my first love, and I am a classical trained pianist.

“This instrument also helps me in my creative process: I often sketch my musical ideas on the piano and then I orchestrate them.”

I am also a trombone player and I love the versatility of this instrument. I know… I am a strange combination of a pianist, a trombonist and a composer.

You worked on two short films. When were involved in the process: only after the film is completed, or before the shooting?
As far as the first film (a documentary), I started working on it in the post production phase. I have been lucky enough to have the complete trust of the director, who gave me a great liberty for the choice of the genre of music, instrumentation, etc. Regarding the second film (a comedy), I have started my collaboration with the director since the beginning. I had the opportunity to read the script before the shooting, so I could start thinking of the music even before seeing any scene of the film.

 

Who would be the composers you like and that may have influenced your work?
That is a hard question, I like so many composers so different one from each other. If I need to choose some, I would say Chopin, Tchaikovsky, Richard Strauss, Rachmaninov for the concert music. For the film music, I love John Williams (who doesn’t?), James Horner and Thomas Newman.
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