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Tykwer and Perfume captivated Krakow!

The night was anxiously awaited by 3,500 spectators. At the opening concert of the 5th jubilee edition of the Film Music Festival in Krakow, the Tinning Plant of ArcelorMittal Poland in Krakow was bursting at the seams. For the first time in the history of the festival, all tickets were sold out long before the event. The audience was wonderful, just as the masterpiece which inaugurated the three-day film and music feast, graced with the presence of legendary film and film music artists.
Krakow once again hosted a premiere performance of one of the most beautiful music scores ever composed; it was played live in sync with the screening of the movie. Several stars sat in the audience, including Julie Taymor, director of the Oscar-winning movie  

Pic: Wojciech Wandzel, www.wandzelphoto.com
The film adaptation of Partick Süskind's bestselling novel Perfume: The Story of a Murderer is an exceptional work of art. It tells the story of an orphan, Jean-Baptiste Grenouille. Abandoned by his mother soon after birth in midst of a filthy fish market, the child wins the struggle for life against all odds. He turns out to be endowed with a supernatural sense of smell and the quest for the perfect perfume becomes the goal of his life. A social misfit immersed in the world of scents, he obsessively looks for the essence of love, which in the end leads him to a cruel experiment with the human body. Before yesterday's concert, Tom Tykwer, the film's director, confessed that he was very sceptical at first. The novel, he said, seemed impossible to film. The plot stirs up extreme emotions, from disgust to admiration for Grenouille's absolute sense of smell. However, in 2006, he decided to take the challenge; his version of Perfume successfully depicts the process in which head-turning perfume essences are composed. The protagonist of the movie stumbles upon the right note by accident. In the murky streets of Paris, he comes across a mysterious girl with curly red hair, carrying a basket full of yellow apricots in her light-coloured hands. At that moment, the yet unknown, exquisite "nose" of 18th century France abandons himself to the quest for capturing her ravishing scent and commits murder. Tom Tykwer's film allows us to feel Grenouille's genius and obsession with smell under our skin... Evocative scenes speak to the viewer through sensuous, sublime music composed by artists from the Pale 3 ensemble: Tom Tykwer, Reinhold Heil, and Johnny Klimek. The score to Perfume: The Story of a Murderer was originally performed by the Berlin Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra under the baton of sir Simon Rattle; however, only parts of it were recorded for the movie at that time. As the artists unanimously confirmed before Krakow's concert - This is the first full performance of the entire score; until today, inidual parts of it were created and recorded separately. They were never performed in sync with the image.

Before the beginning of the concert, Reinhold Heil addressed the Krakow Philharmonic Choir and the outstanding soprano, Karolina Gorgol-Zaborniak, saying - When we started working on the music, I intuitively knew it could not be written without a choir. We began by writing choral parts. When I look at the stage today and see such a huge choir and orchestra, I feel I'm embarking on a new adventure with Perfume.

The premiere simultaneous version presented at the Film Music Festival was performed by a 90-person strong symphonic orchestra accompanied by nearly 100 vocalists from a mixed choir. The perfect unity of sound and image was ensured with the aid of cutting-edge technology by the exquisite Swiss master of simultaneous music scores, maestro Ludwig Wicki, known to the festival audience for his monumental performances of music to the entire The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Behind the scenes, Ludwig Wicki revealed the secret which helps him stay focused behind the conductor's pulpit for two hours: "all you need is a bar of chocolate".

A few moments before the opening event, the authors of the movie reminisced about the open-air concert held at the Błonia Meadow in 2009, a brief 40-minute foretaste of what they were to prepare specifically with the 5th Film Music Festival in mind. After Krakow, the film and music version of Perfume will appear at festivals in Lucerne, Paris, Munich, and London. The world premiere of the version was supported by one of the largest German film studios, Constantin Film Distribution GmbH.

The artists dedicated yesterday's concert to the producer of the movie, who passed away last year; Tom Tykwer addressed the audience and the organisers saying -

 Pic: Wojciech Wandzel, www.wandzelphoto.com