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programfilm series

overview : films
Thank You for the Music (1997)

Presentation: 3 March 2005, 20.00
160 million people around the world hear anonymous background music, i.e. muzak, every day. Thank You for the Music looks at this underrated type of music and shows how it works.

To the accompaniment of 26 muzak recordings, established professionals talk about making, programming and distributing the music. The program features American author Joseph Lanza and the Dutch music programmer Theo van Leeuwen.

Van Leeuwen has programmed the entire repertoire of Phillips Background Music for nearly 30 years. The film also visits the Paul Natte Orchestra, van Leeuwen‘s house band, at a studio in Hilversum, the Netherlands – the „roots“ of European background music. Joseph Lanza is known for his visionary work Elevator Music and Coctail.

In contrast to common belief, Thank You for the Music shows that muzak does not always succeed in manipulating the listener: Since muzak can also be listened to, it can‘t always control people‘s fantasies. „By taking away the ego of the artist, background music allows the listener to fill in the blanks.“ (Joseph Lanza)

Video still from
Mika Taanila, Thank You for the Music (1997)

24 Min., 35mm / Beta SP, 1.85, Dolby SR, color, English dialogue

Futuro - A New Stance for Tomorrow (1998)

Presentation: 3 March 2005, 20.00
Futuro - A New Stance for Tomorrow is a journey back in time to our recent futuristic past. It‘s a documentary about the rise and fall of the plastic Futuro house, the story of a „Space Age“ utopia that almost came true.

Mika Taanila‘s film Futuro - A New Stance for Tomorrow turns the history of a forgotten milestone in Finnish design into a story full of international colour and drama. It traces the development of Suuronen‘s „purely mathematical idea“ into a multipurpose commodity which is eventually destroyed by time. Director Mika Taanila and Marko Home did extensive research to trace Futuro‘s story step by step. Unique amateur film and other archive footage highlight the enthusiasm and ardour that followed Futuro around the world. All the key characters from Futuro‘s past who are still alive have been interviewed, from architect Suuronen to German conceptual artist Charles Wilp, and they answer such questions as:

What is the link between Andy Warhol, Christo, the Royal family of Kuwait and Futuro‘s history? Why did Playboy magazine give Futuro an impressive launch in its September issue in 1970? What plans did Sputnik, the official youth travel agency in the Soviet Union, have in mind for Futuro? Where was the world‘s first Futuro „spacebank“? When did Santa Claus bring Futuro to Estonia?

The soundtrack of the multilingual film features futuristic Moog Music from the late 1960s and electronic film music by the Finnish experimental group Ektroverde.

Video still from
Mika Taanila, Futuro - A New Stance for Tomorrow (1998)

29 Min, 35mm, 1.85, Dolby Digital, col/bw, Finnish/Swedish/English/Estonian/German dialogue

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