Dec 6, 2007

Composer Joe Hisaishi talks about TWSSG

Excerpt from the interview aired on NHK "Studio Park "
Nov. 17,2007

Two years ago, TWSSG Producer Kim who was a fan of Hisaishi's music asked him to compose music for this drama.
Hisaishi built his image of the drama upon reading the script, and after visiting the location site in Jeju last Sept, his concept was finalized.

Hisaishi: The protagonist of this drama "Damdeok" is a historical figure in Korean history that even appears in the text books. So this is a historical drama of a grand scale. With this in mind, I wanted to compose something that conveys the grandeur of this work in a tight style with the music performed by an orchestra. In addition to creating music that expresses the caliber of this work, I concentrated on writing melodies that would be felt deeply by the heart.

A recording session took place this March in Saitama.
Hisaishi composed 38 pieces amounting to approximately 180 minutes of music.

H: I composed an enormous amount of music. Considering that, I think I put in everything I have into this work, and I am satisfied with the outcome.

In"Damdeok's Theme", the main theme of this drama, Hisaishi layed the gracious and brave image of BYJ himself upon the character Damdeok.

H: The role of Damdeok itself is quite a passive figure - he is at the mercy of fate, and at times suffers (facing difficulties?) When BYJ plays Damdeok, the qualities of the two men seem to overlap. Damdeok is not a portrayed as a man who is merely masculine and strong. He is one that agonizes over problems and shows concern towards those around him. I tried very hard to express such a character.

(Hisaishi's impression of BYJ on the set)

H: When I met him on the set at Jeju, YJ said "PD Kim is always in a
good mood when you show up. So, please come to see us often!". He was cheerful, and oh how should I say it... I thought that he was a really nice person.

The story of how Suzini (a tomboy in her youth) gradually falls in love with Damdeok is one of the features of this drama. Hisaishi claims that "Suzini's Theme", triggered him to change his attitude towards the approach of composing the music.

H: When I began to write the beginning part of “Suzini’s Theme”, which is incidentally the sub-theme of this drama, I thought “oh, this piece doesn't fit into the drama. But since I started on it, I thought oh well, I might as well show it to the producer. He ended up liking it. You see, since my previous works were usually for films, I have been used to creating works with a formal style. But I realized that what was required in this drama was something easily accessible, at the same time conveying the grandeur of scale. After that, I switched my approach to fulfill these qualities.

(His impressions of TWSSG)

H: Other than this being a great historical spectacle, this work also offers the best qualities of Korean dramas, as it features such traits as human compassion and the clarity of how the characters are portrayed.. The amount of CGs used in the drama is more than you can imagine, and go far beyond the caliber of an ordinary drama. I would be happy if the viewers would take these things into account when they watch it.

I myself have only watched this drama up to episode 3, so I am looking forward to watching it on NHK when it airs.

(VOD can be found on QUILT posted on Nov.17 by Makishi – thanks Makishi as always!)


bb said...

hey flowerbossa!

thanks much much for this :)

love that part where wuri yong joon joked about pd kim's mood :p

flowerbossa said...

Hi bb,

Yes, YJ witty as usual^^
(I don't think any one would care to be around PD Kim when he isn't in a good mood...)

SO... the drama has ended.

BUT it seems that the excitement has just begun!

Thanks for coming by♪