Filmic, our ongoing exploration of the creative connections across film and music returns in March and April for an immersive and stimulating selection of screenings, live performances and events here, at Watershed and Colston Hall.

Mark Cosgrove, Watershed’s Cinema Curator introduces us to the season:

The power of music to create suspense is one of the tingling joys of the cinema experience. It is as much Bernard Herrmann’s haunting swirling score as Hitchcock’s directing that draws us into the vortex of Jimmy Stewart’s madness in Vertigo or Hans Zimmer’s music weaving together the multiple layered worlds of Christopher Nolan’s Inception…and how many of us have audibly hummed those two notes from Jaws, terrifying ourselves when swimming?

Filmic 18 kicks off with the Sound of Suspense film season at Watershed with Don’t Look NowVertigoSorcerer and Inception and climaxes with two great opportunities to see and hear live music to screenings of Spielberg classics Raiders of the Lost Ark and Jaws at Colston Hall.

Later in the season in a one-off special event on Sun 15 April Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury will give an insight into their collaboration on the increasingly influential Ex Machina as we explore how musicians have created the otherworldly sounds of Sci-fi. From that maestro Bernard Herrmann’s experimental use of the theremin in The Day the Earth Stood Still to the ominous low tones and vocal harmonies of Jóhan Jóhannsson’s score to Arrival. News of Jóhann Jóhannsson’s sudden death reached us as we were putting the final touches to our Filmic programme. Arrival was one of the first films I planned to screen when thinking about the Sound of Sci-Fi. I could never have imagined that we would now be showing it in memory of this hugely talented composer.

For Filmic 18’s launch event on Fri 16 March at St George’s we present the unique immersive sound and vision experience from the Hidden Orchestra and Limbic Cinema. St George’s continue their exploration of Filmic possibilities with celebrated Bristol jazz musician Andy Sheppard partnering with Norwegian guitarist Eivind Aarset who will ‘play the building’. Filmic 18 closes with a live audio visual mix of improvised music from local heroes Eyebrow and visuals from artist Kathy Hinde, followed by a specially commissioned AV set from cult jazz-meets-minimalism trio Mammal Hands.

During April, Watershed also presents the stunning new score from sitar maestro Anoushka Shankar to the gloriously restored Shiraz (1928) which tells the story behind the construction of the Taj Mahal and the fascinating Treasures from the Turin Film Museum with live musical accompaniment.