For the first time, Music Meets Film has also launched a special award for young and talented composers. This year’s competition received 29 works in total, from which 20 were presented by Estonian and 9 by international competitors.
The first prize went to Estonian-born Jonas Tarm, who has focused in recent years primarily on work as a composer for the concert stage and film. Various ensembles have commissioned him to write original music, including the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, New York Virtuoso Singers, Boston Musica Viva, the Estonian XXVII Song Festival, New York Youth Symphony, and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra.
The jury noted that Jonas Tarm’s score successfully navigated the film clip’s ambiguity of genre, reflecting and enhancing the dramatic tension, dark comedy, and action sequences with rhythmic vigour and timbral variety while maintaining its own strong musical identity. Simultaneously rich and transparent, the score also provided a flexible musical counterpart to the pre-existing audiotrack, allowing space for dialogue and sound editing. The overall effect was a well-paced, sonically-integrated, and ultimately humorous audiovisual experience.
Two Honorary Prizes went to Paweł Lewicki (PLN) and Taaniel Pogga (EST), who applied very different musical strategies to the film clip, both of which the jury felt were worthy of recognition. Pawel Lewicki’s well-crafted, Morricone-inspired score highlighted the clip’s Western undercurrent and heightened the comedic effect with its unexpected approach. Taaniel Pogga’s score takes a darker perspective, its gritty electronics driving the action sequences and imbuing the clip with dramatic intensity.
The initiative is promoted by Orchestral Tools and awards its first prize of 2000 EUR as well as a package of Orchestral Tools’ virtual instruments including their acclaimed Tallinn collection. Participants were invited to compose an original soundtrack to a video clip, to demonstrate their composition skills and musical creativity. The clip was provided in partnership with BFM – Tallinn University Baltic Film, Media and Arts School. The winner was selected by a jury of music and film professionals from this years’ Music Meets Film panelists, and announced on 23 November at Black Nights Discovery Campus Award Ceremony.