Music performed by the Irish Film Orchestra under the direction of Mark SuozzoNEW YORK, May 6, 2016 — (PRNewswire) — Sony Classical proudly announces the release of LOVE & FRIENDSHIP (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) available digitally May 6 and on CD, May 13. LOVE & FRIENDSHIP, writer-director Whit Stillman's adaptation of Jane Austen's Lady Susan, was the comedy hit of this year's Sundance and Rotterdam film festivals. The film arrives in theatres nationwide on May 13th 2016.
ABOUT LOVE & FRIENDSHIP
Set in the 1790s, earlier than most Austen tales, LOVE & FRIENDSHIP concerns beautiful young widow Lady Susan Vernon (Kate Beckinsale) who has come to Churchill, the estate of her in-laws, to wait out colourful rumours about her dalliances circulating through polite society. Whilst ensconced there, she decides to secure a husband for herself and for her daughter, Frederica, played by Morfydd Clark.
Chloë Sevigny, who starred with Beckinsale in Stillman's The Last Days of Disco (1998), plays Lady Susan's friend and confidante Alicia Johnson, with Stephen Fry as her husband, the "very Respectable" Mr. Johnson. The waters are troubled by the arrival at Churchill of the handsome, eligible Reginald DeCourcy (Xavier Samuel) and silly but cheerful -- and very rich -- Sir James Martin (Tom Bennett).
The film currently has a very rare perfect 100% rating on the "Rotten Tomatoes" critics website. Tim Robey, writing in the Telegraph (UK), gave the film 5 out of 5 stars: "Flat-out hilarious. Jane Austen has never been funnier. Lives up to every possible expectation you could set for it." Peter Howell, writing in the Toronto Star, calls the film, "A joy to watch and a pleasure to listen to."
LOVE & FRIENDSHIP is produced by Whit Stillman, Katie Holly and Lauranne Bourrachot, and co-produced by Raymond van der Kaaij.
LOVE & FRIENDSHIP is a Westerly Films, Blinder Films, Chic Films production in co-production with Revolver Amsterdam & Arte France Cinema in association with Protagonist Pictures, Soficinema 11 & Cinemage 10 & the Netherlands Films Fund & with the participation of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/Irish Film Board.
For updates, please visit loveandfriendshipmovie.com, facebook.com/ LoveAndFriendshipMovie and twitter.com/LandFMovie.
ABOUT THE SOUNDTRACK
About the music, director Whit Stillman writes:
"The Love & Friendship soundtrack provided us with the opportunity to use the music we love to enhance Jane Austen's delightful story. Obscure as well as better known works by Handel, Purcell, Charpentier, Mozart, Vivaldi & other composers of the Pantheon are joined by less frequently recorded composers such as Frémart, Boyce, Jadin, and Vogel. All the music was recorded under the direction of Mark Suozzo. Mark has had the key role in the music for all our films since 1989 when (for Metropolitan) he arranged a two-handed piano version of Bedrich Smetana's Die Moldau, each hand recorded separately, among other feats. Our second collaboration (Barcelona) reflected our enthusiasm for Baroque music, which finds fuller expression in this soundtrack. Jane Austen's story of Lady Susan Vernon & her amours was written in the 1790s but music from an earlier period seemed better to reflect the spirit of the piece. Paris-based composer Benjamin Esdraffo wrote key additional tracks, including the opening titles' harp theme. Period music expert Etienne Jardin greatly aided the musical research while film editor Sophie Corra helped select the music which best met the film's dramatic needs. In late August 2015 Mark, associate musical director Tomas Peire Serrate and the London-based mixer Steven McLaughlin convened at Windmill Lane Studios in Dublin where Mark conducted the Irish Film Orchestra in this all-original recording."
Mark Suozzo, for his part, adds:
"From the first strains of Benjamin Esdraffo's Harp Theme, the music of Love & Friendship brings the Georgian era to life through a variety of musical styles—dramatic French overtures, marches (both quick and stately), a brisk country dance, wistful sensuous arias, aggressive movements from a Vivaldi cello concerto and Beethoven's cello sonatas, sonorous and idyllic wind symphonies and the spiritual quality of the religious music of Charpentier and Frémart. The music frames the action—it accompanies our journey to places as dramatic (and sometimes pompous) as the country estates, but also welcomes us to the domestic tranquility within.
"Caitriona Walsh's fine Irish Film Orchestra, ably led by concertmistress Therese Timoney, brought a stylistic unity to the many musical genres and composers represented here. Recordist/mixer Steven McLaughlin's deep respect for the style and meticulous attention to sonic detail will, I hope, make the listener appreciate once more the fine performances in the film.
"Handel's sensuous arias like Cor di Padre and Urne funestre have a restrained quality, filled with longing and deep emotion—they are brilliantly performed here by Chloe Martin. Dianne Marshall's harp starts us off with notes of domestic tranquility that fade as the dramatic proceedings get more complicated. William Butt's cello solos have the air of danger and portent in the Beethoven and the Vivaldi. David Adams' harpsichord sparkles throughout—his solo on D'Agincourt's La Sonnig is a gem. It is great to have it here in the clear of the banter at the wedding reception."
About Mark Suozzo, Musical Director
Mark Suozzo composes music for feature films and documentaries. He's had the pleasure of working with many of America's finest independent filmmakers. Since beginning his film scoring career on Whit Stillman's Metropolitan, Mark has been a member of Whit's team on Barcelona, Last Days of Disco, Damsels in Distress, The Cosmopolitans and Love & Friendship; his other film credits include Mary Harron's The Notorious Bettie Page, and Shari Springer-Berman and Bob Pulcini's American Splendor and The Nanny Diaries. Mark's scoring has been featured in many documentaries for HBO and PBS. His orchestrations have been featured in many Carnegie Hall concerts of Skitch Henderson's New York Pops, accompanying such artists as Cissy Houston, Reba McIntire, Maureen McGovern and Bebe Neuwirth. As an arranger he's recorded with Creed (#1 "With Arms Wide Open"), Britney Spears and Aretha Franklin. He is Co-Director of Film Scoring at NYU/Steinhardt.
About Benjamin Esdraffo, Composer
Benjamin Escraffo is a Paris-based composer, critic, pianist and filmmaker. Benjamin followed the film's progress through its editing in Paris and contributed the Harp Theme for the main titles and other music. Benjamin has composed music for many films, including La France (Serge Bozon, 2007, in collaboration with Fugu), L'Idiot (Pierre Léon, 2008), Tirez la langue, Mademoiselle (Axelle Ropert, 2013), Truffaut au présent (Axelle Ropert, 2014), Belle dormant (Adolpho Arrietta, two songs written for Ingrid Caven , 2016), La Prunelle de mes yeux ( Axelle Ropert , 2016). Since 2005 Benjamin has been the composer and pianist for the singer, and within the groups Dorian Pimpernel (since 2012) and Fugu (since 2013).