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THE ODD LIFE OF TIMOTHY GREEN

Music
Emmy -winning composer Geoff Zanelli gave life to the score for "The Odd Life of Timothy Green." Zanelli's work is more familiar to Disney audiences than they may realize, due to his numerous collaborations with iconic composer Hans Zimmer on such Disney blockbusters as "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End," "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" and "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl."

Director Peter Hedges worked closely on the score with Zanelli. Zanelli says of this experience: "Peter was open to letting me play very raw ideas. He has an amazing imagination, so I felt safe showing him music that was still gestating. Taking chances on the unknown is part of the Greens' journey in the film, and you could say that Peter and I were inspired to explore the unknown, musically, while scoring this film."

Director Peter Hedges comments, "Geoff read the script and then wrote two very impressive cues on spec. The first had a big, sweeping melody and musical heft. So I was immediately interested. The second cue, which he called 'Quirkington,' was much smaller in scope but it, too, had an unforgettable melody. Here he also used an unconventional group of instruments. These cues evidenced Geoff's tremendous range. And I loved how his music made me feel. There was an innate beauty, a playfulness, a pathos, a sense of hope."

There were several themes in "The Odd Life of Timothy Green" that resonated with Zanelli when he began to plan the score. "I realized that this is a beautiful movie about what it is to be a parent," said Zanelli, father of a 2-year-old girl, "and what it is you can learn from your children if you let them teach you."

The theme of nature also inspired Zanelli, whose goal with the score was to keep it very acoustic, organic and handcrafted. He explains, "I wanted every single aspect of the music to have some type of human element and not feel disconnected from the audience the way a giant orchestra or synthesized instruments can sometimes feel. So the instrumental groups were much smaller than you'd expect. I handpicked each musician who played on the score, focusing on players whose individual styles and voices would connect in a distinctly human way with the audience."

To that end, Zanelli's score for the film embraces instruments and instrumental pairings that are outside the traditional film score. Crafting his compositions with folk instrumentation, Zanelli employed ukuleles, guitars, dulcimers, banjos and also very non-traditional materials found inside the world of "The Odd Life of Timothy Green," such as branches, rocks and pencils.

Since the changing of seasons is featured in the look of the film, Zanelli's music also reflected the seasons and the passing of time. "As you're following the story of the Greens, it turns lighter and darker with the seasons and I wanted the music to reflect not only the changing of seasons, but the passing of childhood," comments Zanelli. "There are a lot of pacing elements in the music, which are there to signify the passage of time. You only get so much time here on Earth and that's definitely represented in the music."

Additionally, Irish songwriter and vocalist/guitarist of groups The Frames and The Swell Season, Glen Hansard, wrote and performed the end credits song for the film, "This Gift." Hansard is also an actor, having appeared in "The Commitments" as well as the film "Once." The song "Falling Slowly" from "Once," which he co-wrote with his co-star Markéta Irglová, won an Oscar for Best Original Song in 2007 as well as 10 other awards and nominations. At the 2012 Tony Awards "Once," the musical, which Hansard co-wrote, took home eight awards, including Best Musical.

Walt Disney Records is releasing Geoff Zanelli's score for "The Odd Life of Timothy Green" as a digital soundtrack on August 14, 2012.

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