March 2017


David Lang and Nicola Piovani - Soundtracks

  • Tuesday, 14 March 2017 - 6:00pm
Villa Aurelia
Sumi Jo sings David Lang's "Simple Song #3" from Youth (La Giovinezza), directed by Paolo Sorrentino.

This event is part of the series New Work in the Arts & Humanities: American Classics.

In this conversation, part of the Academy’s ongoing series of events dedicated to American Classics, David Lang and Nicola Piovani will discuss their respective work for cinema, considering the importance of contemporary music to cinematic narrative.

Pulitzer-Prize winning composer David Lang contributed the songs “I Lie” and “World to Come” to the soundtrack of Paolo Sorrentino’s The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza), an ode to the Eternal City, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2013 before going on to win the Oscar for best foreign language film at the 86th Academy Awards. In the opening scene, a women’s chorus sings a Minimalist sacred composition by Lang within the vaulted spaces of the Fontana dell' Acqua Paola, on the Janiculum Hill. Lang was nominated for an Oscar for the haunting “Simple Song #3,” which he composed for Sorrentino’s La giovinezza (2015). The song sums up the complex emotional life of a retired conductor, played by Michael Caine, on vacation at a Fellini-esque spa in Switzerland. David Lang is the Paul Fromm Composer in Residence at the American Academy in Rome in the spring of 2017.

Maestro Nicola Piovani, is one of Italy’s best-known composers of film scores, with over 130 film scores to his credit, including The Night of the Shooting Stars (1982), Kaos (1984), both directed by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, and Federico Fellini’s Ginger e Fred (1986), Intervista (1987), and La voce della luna (1990). In 1998, Piovani won the Oscar for Best Original Dramatic Score for his work on Roberto Benigni’s celebrated film La vita è bella.

The event will be conducted in English and Italian with simultaneous translation in both languages.

The 2016-17 Conversations/Conversazioni series is sponsored by The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation.

Please note: valid photo ID is required for entry into the American Academy in Rome. Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than cm 40 x 35 x 15 (inches 16 x 14 x 6) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.