Ben Frost’s soundtrack for Andrei Tarkovsky’s Solaris

RealTime Arts interviews composer Ben Frost about his process for creating a new soundtrack for the classic science fiction movie:

The core of that shared language turned out to be improvisation with the basis of the final composition arising from sessions recorded while watching the film, with Bjarnason on heavily prepared piano and Frost on heavily prepared guitars. Frost describes the process: “We did this a few times. There were a lot of moments where we were just sitting in this room watching the film together, but every now and then we’d find things in it, find angles on it and go off into weird little slow jams, ending up with all this material [that] became the basis for the score.”

They then fed the audio files into a computer to generate MIDI data resulting “in all kinds of errors and misinterpretations of that material, which in turn created a whole new set of ideas that were wrong.” However the errors were what Frost was looking for: “I was really interested in the idea of translation and transformation through misinterpretation of information. For me, [this] is what Solaris is about – this idea of missing information. This woman [Hari, who is] being projected back to [Kris Kelvin] is essentially his memory of her. It’s not her in the true sense. So I really liked the idea of working musically that way.”


Read more about Andrei Tarkovsky, Ben Frost, and Solaris.