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How The Broken Hearts Gallery Composer Genevieve Vincent Created the Film's Sound

10/2/2020 • 3 min read

THE BROKEN HEARTS GALLERY is a romantic comedy about life and love in New York City starring Geraldine Viswanathan and Dacre Montgomery as an unlikely couple who get together thanks to a memorial to past relationships.

Genevieve Vincent composed the movie's score, which helps communicate the feeling of being in love after a bitter breakup. Now, she has also written about the experience of bringing the movie's music to life. Read Vincent's statement below.

I loved writer/director Natalie Krinsky’s script for THE BROKEN HEARTS GALLERY as soon as I read it. I found it so funny and relatable, because, like the main character Lucy, I had also spent my early 20s scrapping it out in New York City.

From our initial conversations, I knew that Natalie was looking for something musically unconventional that also felt contemporary. So I wanted to create a tone that embodied what Lucy would have had playing in the background of her day-to-day life. In my mind, that meant writing a mix between a pop song and a film score. By combining a string section (to evoke the grandeur of New York City) with drum machines, electric guitar, synths, piano, and hand percussion to speak to the world view of the characters, I was able to reflect the sounds of Lucy's personal playlist and the diverse objects featured in The Broken Hearts Gallery itself.
 
Natalie and I went back and forth throughout the movie in a very collaborative way as the edit took shape. It was incredible to work with Editor Shawn Paper ("What We Do In The Shadows;" "Veep;" "Girls") and play off of the comedic timing Natalie, he, and the actors had achieved. Geraldine Viswanathan, Dacre Montgomery and the incredible cast of supporting actors did such an amazing job and were so expressive in their performances so it made reflecting that musically pretty easy. I was also able to draw inspiration from the pitch perfect songs Music Supervisor Melany Mitchell had placed in the film to create seamless transitions between the songs and score with the help of Music Editor, Chris Foster, who had great instincts on the best ways to connect it all together.
 
I’ve always loved music in movies. Some of the first film scores I fell in love with were Yann Tiersen’s score to AMELIE, Jerry Goldsmith’s score to ALIEN, Danny Elfman’s score to THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS, Philip Glass’s score to THE HOURS, Bernard Herrmann’s score to VERTIGO, and Thomas Newman’s scores to THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION and AMERICAN BEAUTY. I remember watching these films as a kid and being incredibly moved by the product of so many pieces moving in concert.
 
Music colors the entire composition of the scene, so it's important that everyone involved is collaborating and working towards the same vision. I love the collaborative part of film scoring as it challenges you to find new and original ways to fill in the missing part of the puzzle. What kind of sadness/happiness/depth of emotion is the character feeling and how can I help with that? What kind of relationships do they have to each other and the world around them and can I comment on that musically? What does the director want to say and how can I translate that? Those are some of the questions I ask myself constantly during the scoring process.
 
It was such an incredible experience to revisit love in New York City through the lens of THE BROKEN HEARTS GALLERY. Exciting, funny, anxious, cute, ironic, and with many ups and downs, all without having to ride the subway.

 

 

 

THE BROKEN HEARTS GALLERY is playing now!

 

All images courtesy of Sony Pictures.

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