My idea for the music was sparse, resonating, scary and a little bit tribal. I am lucky that my step-sister, Lisa, married the talented cello player Shanto Bhattacharya, and he agreed to compose the music and play cello. Everything about the score is what I heard in my mind when I wrote the script. It seems to me his work on this film was preordained.
Shanto and Jesse played the music while they watched the film and occasionally peaked at the sheet music. The exciting part of recording live instruments, rather than composing on a computer, is that happy accidents are able to happen. The music sounds fresh and organic.
Jesse performed one violin bit in a single take. I was impressed, it was the first time Jesse had ever read Shanto's music sheets. After each bit he played he had to run back to the recording room to listen. Both guys looked exhausted at the end of the day, but they did an amazing job. I am really proud of their work.
In this video Monster's composer/cello player Shanto Bhattachara, score sound engineer/violin player Jesse Zubot record the score and me watching. Recorded by Rich on his iphone very quickly, so it's a bit wonky and grainy.
Monster Behind the Scenes: The Score from deborah on Vimeo.
Check out Shanto and Jesse's band out, Fond of Tigers, nominated for an independent spirit music award and this weekend they won the Juno for best Instrumental album. Yah, Tigers! way to go!