Walter Hus: Sound in Reality-based Films

    Friday 14 January 2022
    Masterclass with Walter Hus

    About this Masterclass

    “When I can think of something, myself, when I have an idea, in fact I am not interested in it anymore, because it is already existing in my head, and it has no surprise. But when 2 ideas come into contact with each other and together they create something new that surprises me, then my whole being gets excited and I go into that direction. “

    What is exciting is to be discovered as you go, not to be imposed by a pre-existing plan or dramaturgy, such as that of a movie. But on the other hand, the experience has taught me that limitations, rules, a framework of any kind can help in the creation of music or music score: by being forced to obey certain rules, one often finds a trajectory from which one did not know its existence beforehand and that one would never have walked otherwise.

    Composer and Musician Walter Hus will discuss with us possibilities of sound for film and share his experiences.

    About Walter Hus

    Walter Hus is originally a classically trained pianist. His love of improvisation led him at first to jazz music. Initially his dream was to travel the world as a (jazz) pianist. In the 1980’s he co- founded the Belgian avant-garde group Maximalist and toured the world with them. They made a kind of radical music: a minimalism that sought a contrapuntal confrontation. In an inconscious way, Walter Hus had from the start being making his music as a (superposition) of layers, and the whole, the total effect, was made by all the layers together. He developed a kind of obsession with counterpoint where complex lines coexist, and for Walter this complexity is an auditory interpretation of the world as it is.

    He became a composer only by accident when he was asked to compose for a fashion show of Yamamoto. Since then, the assignments have not stopped. While at first he performs a classical repertoire and his own piano music, he later explores many musical styles by collaborating with orchestras and ensembles of all kinds, writers, visual artists, cartoonists, rock and techno artists, as well as theatre directors, choreographers, filmmarkers and video game developers.

    They include Rosas Dance Company, Roxane Huilmand, Jan Ritsema, Guy Cassiers, Needcompagny, Hybrid Dance Company, Ben Okri, Peter Greenaway, Chris Ware, Tale of Tales, Frederic Rzewski, Fatoumata Diawara, Guo Gan, DJ Push, Peter Krüger, Many Riche, Spectra Ensemble, Arditti Quartet, Brussels Philharmony Orchestra and many others.

    In 2000, he discovered the Decap Orchestrion, a computer controlled automated setup of organs and percussion instruments developed by the belgian company Decap and thereby discovers a new aspect: the importance of the texture of the sound as a musical element that is at least as important in shaping a work as the specific sequence of the musical notes themselves. He sets out to explore the new instrument, composing soundscapes, operas, film scores, stage music and rock songs, collaborating with wind energy research projects, revisiting techno hits from the 1990’s and numerous other projects.

    The Decap Orchestrion gave new dynamism to Walter Hus’ film scores. Not only did he have now with this miraculous device his own orchestra, so to speak, with which he could immediately have his own music performed, he was also able to invent a new kind of sounds as if he could shape the wind, and in this way creating sound landscapes with which the images of a film could form a contrapuntal landscape, as it were.
    In 2015, he received the Ensor Award at the Ostend International Film Festival for his soundtrack to the film N- The Madness of Reason be Peter Krüger.