DID YOU READ

Exclusive premiere: Hilary Hahn & Hauschka “Bounce Bounce”

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Grammy winning American violinist, Hilary Hahn, and German modernist composer, Hauschka (a.k.a. Volker Bertelmann) met in Iceland to  combine their genius at a place where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates collide. The result is the collaborative album “Silfra,” which features Hahn’s acclaimed talents (she’s been hailed as one the greatest violinists in the world) and Hauschka’s prepared piano — internally transformed by gaffers tape, bottle tops, bells and all manner of found odds and ends — which create mini rhythm sections within the classic instrument as he plays it.

It’s music to be inspired by, and stop-motion animator and director Hayley Morris‘ video certainly was. It’s her creations and this handmade underwater wonderland with “Bounce Bounce” as it’s score that I most fell in love with. “I really wanted to capture the energetic and spontaneous feeling of the song itself, and honor the collaboration between Hilary Hahn and Hauschka,” Morris told us. “When Hauschka performs he takes different recognizable objects and places them into his piano to alter the sound. I wanted to take the same approach as the music’s creation and have the materials themselves create a narrative and look.”

 

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Morris found her materials hidden in drawers at antique stores and pining for her life giving touch in bins at flea markets around her Brooklyn neighborhood. Crocheted doilies turned into coral creatures. Scraps of fabric formed into two crabs fighting over a wayward snail, and flamboyant starfish dancing with/dueling over a found morsel. The rest of the world was rendered in paper mache, knitting and other hand made brilliance. A wooden bird was born of driftwood she collected over the years.

“For each scene I animated about 10 objects at once frame by frame including the shadows that move across the shot,” Morris emphasized. “I like my work to be tactile and textured and for my art work to pick up the light in interesting ways.” She used no computer effects whatsoever, but created her own. She added atmosphere by shooting glitter floating in water which when applied to the final cut, create depth and little twinkly floaties that occasionally catch the eye.

Morris thought there was a tidal feeling to the song and gave her own adorable take on it. “When I first heard the song I immediately thought of tide pools. Every summer I would go to the coast of Maine and I was always fascinated by the miniature worlds I could find,” she said. “There are so many different creatures and plants compacted into such a small space and I thought it would be an interesting environment to focus on… . It’s timing and feeling is constantly changing and I felt I could choreograph the underwater world beautifully to the song.”

Hahn & Hauschka’s “Silfra,” which is also the name of the rift near Reykjavik (a diver’s paradise) where those two tectonic plates meet, will be released May 22nd on Deutsche Grammophone.

Feel like dancing with starfish now? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter or Facebook!

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Home Run

Hank Azaria Gets Thrown A Curve Ball

Brockmire Premieres April 5 at 10P

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Unless you’ve somehow missed every episode of the Simpsons since 1989, then surely you know that Hank Azaria is one of the most important character actors of our time. He’s so prolific and his voice is so dynamic that he’s responsible for more iconic personalities than most folks realize. Basically, he’s the great and powerful Oz — except that when you pull back the curtain the truth is actually more impressive. And now Hank is coming to IFC to bring yet another character to the TV pop culture hive mind in the new series Brockmire. Check out the trailer below.

Based on the following Funny or Die short and co-starring Amanda Peet, Brockmire follows the story of imploded major league sportscaster Jim Brockmire as he tries to resurrect his career by calling plays for a floundering minor league team in a podunk town.

The series is written by Joel Church-Cooper (Undateable) and produced by Funny or Die’s Mike Farah and Joe Farrell, meaning that there’s funny in front of the camera, funny behind the camera–funny all around. Sounds like a ball to us.

Brockmire premieres April 5 at 10P on IFC.

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Car Notes

Portlandia On People Who Can’t Park

Portlandia returns tonight at 10P on IFC.

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If flagrant bad parking takes nerve, then retaliatory note writing takes neuroses. Watch Fred and Carrie take passive aggression to next level in Car Notes, the new Portlandia web series presented by Subaru. The first episode is yours right here and now, and you can see every installment of Car Notes anytime online, on the IFC app and on demand.

Portlandia returns tonight at 10P on IFC.

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Nick Kroll and John Mulaney To Host Spirit Awards

The Spirit Awards Air February 25 LIVE on IFC.

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The 2017 Spirit Awards have finally found their frontmen: Nick Kroll and John Mulaney. And it’s no wonder. Just marvel in their splendid chemistry back when they appeared on Comedy Bang! Bang!:

The pair are prolific within the performing arts community: television (Kroll in The League and The Kroll Show, Mulaney as a writer of IFC’s own Documentary Now!), theater (including Broadway’s current Oh Hello Show), and stand-up comedy. In fact, it’s entirely possible that emceeing an awards show is one of the few remaining line items on their professional bucket lists.

It’s important to caveat this announcement, however. Unlike the bigger and more ubiquitously known awards shows, the Spirit Awards are not, well…boring. (We’re talking to you, Oscar.)

They’re funny. They’re honest. They have quality to match the red-carpet fanfare. And that’s alarmingly special. Last year’s show included some legitimately historic moments, like when transgender actress Mya Taylor won best supporting female, or Kate McKinnon’s hilarious and timely parody of Carol. See more highlights here to get the flavor of the Spirit Awards and read all about Film Independent to dig deeper.

The 2017 Spirit Awards air live February 25 at 5P ET exclusively on IFC.

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