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Johanna's blog

Slightly dodgy saxophonist

Music on Screen

Calling all film fanatics! The music department is running a Music on Screen series which is a fantastic series of films that are significant in the history of cinema. Some of these films are very difficult to find and therefore this is an ideal opportunity for avid film fans to see some rare cinematic gems.

Last year I saw an Indonesian film called Opera Jawa, which is a musical set in Java about a married couple that is retired from dancing in plays. The play they danced in depicted the Ramayana and the plot of the play is repeated in the lives of the characters. (This series is particularly good for exploring different cultures).

This semester I went to see a fascinating film called Roma, by Federico Fellini. This film was interesting because there was basically no plot; it was just a series of seemingly unrelated vignettes (with some overarching themes). It was actually incredibly challenging to watch as it was so different from the style of storytelling used in most films, but that was what made it so enjoyable. Due to the fragmented nature of the clips, it was virtually impossible to tune out and let the mind wander away from the film, it was necessary to remain completely attentive throughout due to the lack of continuity, and this made the viewing an incredibly refreshing and exciting experience.

In fact, the reason that I enjoy this series so much is that it gives the chance to see many different styles of film, some of which were (pleasantly) challenging to watch like Roma and because we start and end with some discussion related to the film, therefore Music on Screen presents an opportunity to engage with films beyond simply sitting and watching them.

Since this series is run by the music department Dr Cenciarelli (the mastermind behind this series) usually relates the discussion to the music in the film, but in the past, non-music students have gotten involved and enriched the discussion with their different points of view, so people from other departments are encouraged to come along.

The screenings take place at 3:45 most Thursday’s in room 2.03 in the John Percival Building and everyone is welcome. More info can be found here:

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