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Film + Music Newsletter 8/22/2007


OFFICE NEWS
FILM + MUSIC HAPPY HOUR AUGUST 29TH AT MOE BAR
The Mayor's Office of Film + Music if proud to present Happy Hour, a monthly film and music industry networking opportunity starting Wednesday, August 29th at Moe Bar (925 E. Pike St.) from 5 to 7pm. This will be a great time to learn more about the Film and Music Office, meet new people in our music and film industries and discuss current issues spanning film and music in Seattle.
EMILY FINKEL COULD BE WORKING FOR YOU!!!
Current Film + Music intern Emily Finkel attends Northeastern University in Boston, which offers a co-op program that allows her to rotate classroom experience with full-time work experience. After completing a semester of classes in Boston this fall, she will be available to work FULL-TIME for six months beginning January 2, 2008. I highly recommend Emily! She has been an instrumental part of the Film + Music Office since the beginning of the year and we are going miss her great work ethic, creative thinking and fun personality. If you like the newsletter, than you should thank her because she is responsible for starting and managing it. Don't let this opportunity pass you by.
INDUSTRY NEWS AND UPDATES
TRANSPORTATION CHOICES CAMPAIGN SEEKING EXTRAS
Five photos illustrating the different ways Seattle's streets can be used are being shot this Sunday, August 26th from 6 AM to 1 PM. The photos will be used in a poster supporting transportation options other than driving alone. SDOT and International Sustainable Solutions are looking for about 200 volunteers with bikes and/or cars. If you, your families and friends are interested in joining us, contact Kristie Maxim at kristie.maxim@onrequestimages.com by 5 PM Friday, August 24. Light refreshments will be served. To learn more about this project and volunteering visit the I-Sustain website.
PIKE PLACE MARKET CENTENNIAL CONCERT
Now available online is an amazing, rare concert of NW musicians playing iconic NW songs in honor of the Pike Place Market centennial last Friday at Victor Steinbrueck Park. Think of it as a 90-minute ethnomusicology course on the history of NW folk, R&B and rock! Highlights include the Long Winters' John Roderick leading a singalong of "The Old Settler (the 'Acres of Clams' folk tune popularized by Ivar Haglund)"; Pearl Jam's Mike McCready playing the Jimi Hendrix version of "The Star Spangled Banner,"; and Presidents' frontman Chris Ballew doing an encore acappella rendition of "Peaches."
ON SCREEN MAGAZINE LAUNCH PARTY
On August 30th, 911 Media Arts will be releasing the latest issue of their magazine, On Screen - The Magazine of Seattle Independent Film and Media Arts. The launch party will take place at the Capitol Hill Arts Center Lower Level at 7 PM to celebrate their "Music in Film" issue. Email On Screen assistant editor Theresa Jones at lightharvest3@yahoo.com to RSVP or for more information.
SIXTH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL FAST FILM CONTEST
The Sixth Annual Film 2880 Fast Film contest will begin Friday, September 7th, 2007 at 7pm. Over 50 filmmakers from around the world will receive a theme, line of dialog and the name of a common household prop via email. Exactly two days later (2,880 minutes) - each filmmaker (or 'Digital Guerilla') will have produced a short film. Three weeks later the top ten films will be shown at the historic Rose Theatre during the 8th-Annual Port Townsend Film Festival (Saturday, September 29th). For more information about the contest, visit the Fast Film website.
MEDIA DIGEST
CLASSICAL PRESENTERS REVEAL SEASON PROGRAMS
Several classical-music presenters have announced their 2006-07 seasons: Opus 7 Vocal Ensemble, Seattle Choral Company, Seattle Pro Musica and more.
FIRM STRIKES A DEAL FOR AUDIO 'WATERMARKING'
A small Seattle company will try to expand its presence in the growing area of audio "watermarking," using technology from Microsoft Corp.'s research labs. Activated Content Inc., a 12-employee company based at Pike Place Market, said Wednesday that it reached a deal to license technology from Microsoft that can insert and decode unique, hidden digital identifiers in audio files.
"KING OF KONG" IS A TOP SCORER
On paper, Seth Gordon's documentary "The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters" sounds like it might appeal only to hard-core gamers. And yet, the movie's a kick: Gordon, a Seattle native, has a knack for shaping a story, taking the audience on a ride as manic and unexpected as that on any video-game console.
STREET'S DISCIPLES: SPORTN' LIFE RECORDS, VOICE OF THE CENTRAL DISTRICT
At present, two labels dominate the local indie hiphop scene: Mass Line, first, and Sportn' Life Records, second. The two have clear identities and areas of representation. Mass Line is essentially out of Beacon Hill and represents global Seattle, the part of the city that's connected with immigration flows from the East, the Far East, and East Africa. Sportn' Life, on the other hand, is essentially out of the Central District and represents the black American experience.
TORONTO SETS INTERNATIONAL DEBUTS
Organizers unveiled much of the international slate for the Toronto Film Festival on Wednesday, with 73 films coming from 40 countries, including world premieres of the latest from Rituparno Ghosh, Jan Schuette, Hans Weingartner and Nick Broomfield.
HOLLYWOOD HITS NEW HIGHS
For better or for worse, the record-breaking run at the summer box office has dramatically raised the bar for just how high Hollywood can fly. For the first time ever, four summer films have broken the $300 million barrier at the domestic box office: "Spider-Man 3" ($336.4 million), "Shrek the Third" ($321 million), "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" ($307.6 million) and "Transformers" ($303.7 million), according to Rentrak.
CONCERTMASTER SEARCH ENDS WITH A FOUR COUNT
The Seattle Symphony's search for a concertmaster has ended in a four-way draw - an outcome few could have predicted during an intense search process that lasted for three years. Music director Gerard Schwarz has selected Emmanuelle Boisvert (concertmaster of the Detroit Symphony), Frank Almond (concertmaster of the Milwaukee Symphony), Ani Kavafian (well-known violin soloist and chamber player) and Seattle's Maria Larionoff (the present acting concertmaster) to share the role.
A BIG WEEK FOR SOME MAJOR PLAYERS
This is a white-knuckle week for Aiden, Kinski and Minus the Bear, three local "rock" bands that sound like they come from different planets, and vary from wild-eyed young dudes to savvy veterans. The common thread: All are eagerly anticipating the Tuesday release of new albums.
PANEL BACKS CLUB-LICENSE PROPOSAL
A proposal requiring Seattle nightclubs to have a special club license passed a key hurdle Thursday evening when a City Council committee approved it on a 2-1 vote. Council members Sally Clark and Jan Drago voted for its passage, and Richard McIver voted against it. The proposal now goes to the full council, which could vote as early as Sept. 17.
LIGHTS, CAMERA, FLICKS GALORE!
Going to the movies is often the perfect escape from the stresses of daily life. But for some movie buffs, just seeing a film is not enough: The venue itself must be as dramatic, romantic or exotic as the movie they are watching. For those looking for adventure both vicarious and actual, film festivals provide anywhere from a weekend to two weeks' worth of film-viewing and party-going in locales that generally qualify as beautiful and exciting.
KONG-HEADS FOR LIFE
You could get calluses just watching "The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters," Seth Gordon's documentary about two men vying for the high score in Donkey Kong. But even if you didn't lose years of your life to that deviously entertaining Reagan-era arcade game, Mr. Gordon's movie still succeeds as a portrait of a subculture: Kong-heads who videotape each game to send to Twin Galaxies, a governing body in Hollywood, Fla., empowered to validate high scores.
FOR RAP STARS, BUSINESS IS OVERTAKING MUSIC
The rap game in particular is increasingly just another hustle, a starting point for would-be moguls seeking to establish themselves as brands and cash in on their names. It's savvy, from a business and marketing standpoint, but it's having a deleterious effect on quality and creativity, especially in the mainstream rap world.
MARKET CENTENNIAL FETED IN SEATTLE STYLE
Pike Place Market celebrated its 100th birthday Friday night with a boisterous tribute to Seattle's best-known songs, from "Louie Louie" to "Barracuda."
A SONG OF FAITH, DEVOTION AND LUNG POWER
A voice that can merge force with genuine (as opposed to acted-out) feeling is another matter altogether, which is where Brandi Carlile, a relatively new talent from Seattle, comes in.
THE CD TURNS 25
Host Debbie Elliott notes the 25th anniversary of the Compact Disc. There's some dispute about what was on that first CD, but by some accounts it was ABBA's last album, "The Visitors." Others insist it was the Alpine Symphony by Richard Strauss.
A GENERATION FINDS ITS MUMBLE
Recent rumblings - perhaps one should say mumblings - indicate an emerging movement in American independent film. Specimens of the genre share a low-key naturalism, low-fi production values and a stream of low-volume chatter often perceived as ineloquence. Hence the name: mumblecore.
SPORTN' LIFE CELEBRATES FIVE YEARS IN THE 206
Circulating among the all-ages crowd at Chop Suey, Devon Manier -- founder and co-owner of Seattle's prominent indie hip-hop label Sportn' Life Records -- gave hugs, shook hands and beamed like a proud father. Saturday's party at Chop Suey marked the record label's five-year anniversary and headlined some of the label's (and Seattle's) remarkable young artists: D. Black (who, with Manier, is the label's co-owner), J. Pinder and Cancer Rising.
COMPETITION FIERCE IN TODAY'S CINEMA
The world of cinema is changing more dramatically now than at any time in the past 50 years, Sundance Film Festival director Geoff Gilmore declared in a keynote speech Sunday at the Edinburgh Film Festival.
RHAPSODY, MTV URGE SERVICES MERGING
On Tuesday, Seattle-based RealNetworks and MTV Networks, a division of Viacom, announced a wide-ranging partnership in which the two companies will market and operate the Rhapsody service together. They also partnered with Verizon Wireless to extend the service to cellphones.
MUSIC BUSINESS STILL GROPING FOR A DIGITAL-AGE PLAN
Nielsen SoundScan data shows that CD sales for this year have fallen 19 percent compared with the same period last year. That's after a roughly 7 percent drop from all of last year. And while more people are legitimately buying music online, 10 times as many songs are still downloaded for free.
BIG STARS NOT WORKING IN CONCERT WITH FANS
In Europe this summer, though, some of the biggest names in music have been having a rough time. Marketplace's Stephen Beard reports now from London on rockers in a hard place.
MUSIC-SELLING RIVALS TAKE AIM AT ITUNES
Apple's market-leading iTunes online music store took a one-two punch yesterday as heavyweight rivals stepped up their efforts to unseat the king of digital music.
GET TRAPPED IN GARY HILL'S FEEDBACK LOOP AT 911 MEDIA ARTS CENTER
Gary Hill's miniretrospective exhibition at 911 Media Arts Center is jarring in many ways. The main piece is a reprise of a 1981 show at and/or, 911's predecessor in the media-arts game, but it's also a glance back to a remote future, when video's avant-garde promise seemed endless.