Composer Eiko Ishibashi collaborates with KASK & Conservatorium students for Film Fest Gent

For its 50th anniversary edition, and in line with its musical DNA, Film Fest Gent releases a new format: FFG Sessions. Aiming to further promote film music as an art form, these concert sessions bring together experienced composers for screen and young musicians for an intimate live performance. For the first FFG Session, Japanese composer Eiko Ishibashi worked with students from KASK & Conservatorium in Ghent.

Created by Film Fest Gent in collaboration with KASK & Conservatorium, FFG Sessions are short recorded concerts in the intimate setting of the MIRY Concert Hall in Ghent. Composers for screen present their work and perform together with the students of KASK & Conservatorium. Arranged for a small ensemble, the music is performed by the students after a hands-on rehearsal with the composer.

The first internationally acclaimed composer to host a FFG Session is Eiko Ishibashi, who opted for a performance of two pieces from her breakthrough score for Ryûsuke Hamaguchi’s Drive My Car. “We’ll live through the long, long days, and through the long nights” is the song that plays during the opening credits of Drive My Car. Inspired by the film’s story about loss and recovering from it, “We’ll live through the long, long days, and through the long nights” is an ambient-drone composition that is reminiscent of Ishibashi’s more experimental music. It’s a variation on the song that features the grieving main character of the film eating bread in a roadside restaurant. “The contrast between loss on one side, and getting on with life has been my inspiration for this piece”, Ishibashi said before the recording session. The other piece – called “Drive My Car” – plays over the end credits of the film. With it, Ishibashi wanted to convey the feeling that the past and the future are coming together.

Eiko Ishibashi

Eiko Ishibashi is a musical phenomenon who has been fusing styles and genres for over a decade now, from chamber pop and musique concrète to jazz improv, prog and noise. She has collaborated with international artists such as Jim O’Rourke, Keiji Haino, Charlemagne Palestine, Merzbow, Giovanni Di Domenico, Phew, and many others. In 2016, she made her debut as a film composer with the score for Albino’s Tree, before going on to write the music for Ryûsuke Hamaguchi’s Oscar-winning film Drive My Car in 2021. Ishibashi’s captivating score earned rave reviews and won her the Discovery of the Year Award at the World Soundtrack Awards in Ghent. This year, she returns to Film Fest Ghent to present her new project GIFT: involving a live performance to a brand-new film by Hamaguchi. She is also one of the guests at the World Soundtrack Awards Ceremony & Concert on 21 October, where her music will be performed by Brussels Philharmonic, conducted by Dirk Brossé.

upcoming FFG Sessions
Film Fest Gent will release more FFG Sessions in the upcoming months, including performances by Daniel Hart and Natalie Holt.