Panu Aaltio is nominated for the HARPA Award 2020 for his music in Marko Röhr's Nature Symphony - Luontosinfonia
As a concept, Nature Symphony (Luontosinfonia) offers rare respect for a feature film score in general. This time the composed score doesn't have to struggle for attention or, on the other hand, hide somewhere behind the dialogue, avoiding to be spotted. This time the music is starring the main role, in a perfect harmony with the beautiful and capturing portraits of nature. Panu Aaltio's score delivered by Vantaa Pops Orchestra is clear, dynamic, and accurate. In these times that our attention is constantly distracted, we deeply miss experiences like this. It is a great reminder - we shall respect the nature as long as it's there. And Panu Aaltio's score truly respects the scenery and characters of this tribute to our nature, ending up to a strong, yet intimate ensemble.
I'm truly honored and humbled to receive the nomination among all the amazing competition this year. I'm particularly happy it is for this exact film, which has been so important to me personally. There's huge possibility in taking people on a nature adventure where they bring the narrative from their own experience. I think it can lead to deeper empathy and understanding.
Panu Aaltio is one of the most prolific film composers in Finnish motion pictures. His first feature film The Home of Dark Butterflies, directed by Dome Karukoski, earned Panu the first of his four Finnish Film Award (Jussi) nominations for Best Music. Since then he has composed music to over 20 feature films, multiple TV series and video games, as well as a full-length ballet for the Finnish National Opera.
For his score to the nature documentary Tale of a Lake (2016), he won the Jussi Award for Best Music, as well as the IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association) Award for Best Documentary Score. He also received the IFMCA Award for the previous film in the series, Tale of a Forest (2012).
A live concert of the two nature films was held at Espoo Metro Areena in 2017, in which the Vantaa Pops Orchestra and a choir performed the music together with the soloist Johanna Kurkela. Based on the success of the concert, a third film went into production, featuring only music and images: Nature Symphony was released widely in Finnish theaters March 2019.
I have had the pleasure to work with Panu Aaltio in numerous productions, both in the role of a producer and now for several years as a director. From the beginning of our co-operation I have been fascinated to work with a person, who never loses the good spirit, is always positive and never says that something is impossible due to schedules or any other reason. I cannot understand how his creativity never seems to suffer from my sometimes impulsive ideas or sudden re-edits of already closed scenes. In all of the demands he reacts with enthusiastic positivity!
Director Marko Röhr
I have had a very close and emotional relationship with nature since my childhood, which is one of the main reasons why I became a filmmaker. Filming nature and making it possible for the audience to see places, where they cannot visit themselves, has been my mission. But as a filmmaker my biggest challenge is how to communicate the feelings nature evokes inside of me.
Panu Aaltio has a talent to bring the emotions and right feelings in my nature movies. Sometimes I have had a feeling, that his music rises above the movie as a piece of art. Therefore it was natural to give his music main role in this film; Nature Symphony is a symphony of picture and music, Panu Aaltio’s music playing the main role!
Director Marko Röhr