An interview with Zosha Di Castri

Zosha Di Castri is interviewed by Gabriel Paquin-Buki about composing a score for the 1973 short film Hunger at the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, which was performed in February.

Hunger was one of the earliest computer-generated animated films.

You had to choose between several NFB short films and you chose Hunger, a 1973 movie by Peter Foldès. Why?

The film Hunger appealed to me because of its distinctive visual style and strong social commentary. The surreal, morphing quality of the early computer animation really caught my attention, and I immediately began imagining how I could embody this kind of warping and dissolving with the orchestra. The message of the movie also struck me as particularly relevant to our time. Here, I see Foldès revealing the grotesqueness of excess, self-indulgence, entitlement, over-consumption, and greed. I was also interested in how the objectification of women is depicted in this film, particularly in the wake of the recent #MeToo movement. For me, this movie is disturbing in a good way. It forces us to reckon with dark issues, but at the same time it is interspersed with surprisingly comical, even beautiful moments. Last, despite its experimental nature, I was drawn to the film’s clarity of form. The transparent delineation of the boldly colored backdrops and the use of repetition struck me as being a useful structure on which to build a musical composition.

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