The international venture, planned for mid-2008, coincides with Mozart’s 250th birth anniversary.Chennai’s greatest gift to Indian film music, AR Rahman, is likely to compose a part of the track for an unusual international film project being planned to coincide with the 250th birth anniversary of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
The brainchild of Salzburg-based Austrian music composer and violin-maker Winrich Sturies, the film has been in the works for over six months.
“It will roll very soon,” says Sturies. “The release of the film is planned for mid 2008.” Mozart was born in Salzburg in January 1756.
The Indian partner in the film venture, Sanjay Kaushik of the Paramount group of companies, says the details are all in place.
“The script is ready, talks are on with Rahman and the process of casting will be completed before we set a firm date for the shoot to begin.”
“The film,” asserts Kaushik, “will be a full-fledged international production that will have substantial Indian participation. The link between the West and India will be organic and natural, not forced as is usually the case with such film projects.”
Sturies has lined up a series of concerts all around Europe under the rubric Project Planet-Mozart.
The film, scripted by Sturies himself, is an extension of that celebration of the work of one of the finest music composers the world has ever known.
How did India come into the picture?
“One of the key characters in the proposed film is an Indian,” reveals Sturies.
“The storyline is set in two eras – Mozart’s own and that of a fictional 17-year-old new millennium boy, Nicholas. The two men meet and play together. A key subplot in the film has Nicholas falling in love with an Indian girl and traveling to this part of the world.”
Sturies is looking to underscore the universality and continuity of music through his unusual narrative. “Music is one mode of human expression that can travel across time and space without any hindrance,” says the Austrian.
Sturies is an admirer of India’s approach to music. “When Ravi Shankar played with Yehudi Menuhin, the god of the violin, nearly 40 years ago, the West saw for the first time that music is not just performance, it is worship.
“It is something that comes from deep within. Ravi Shankar taught us that music is composed and performed with the heart and not with mere instruments,” he says.
Sturies, who attended the 36th International Film Festival in Goa for a few days before setting out to explore other parts of the country, is impressed with what he has seen so far.
“I cannot express in words how excited I am with the creative energy that I see here,” he says.