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Friday, January 28, 2022

Fine Arts

U.K. artists incorporates live music into film


The Light Surgeons, a United Kingdom production company that focuses on live cinema performances, was founded by Christopher Thomas Allen and other artists in 1995. Their screening of “SuperEverything*” at the Asia Society Texas Center on Friday was the U.S. premiere. | David A. Brown/Dabfoto Creative

The Light Surgeons, a United Kingdom production company that focuses on live cinema performances, was founded by Christopher Thomas Allen and other artists in 1995. Their screening of “SuperEverything*” at the Asia Society Texas Center on Friday was the U.S. premiere. | David A. Brown/Dabfoto Creative

In a partnership with the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts, the Asia Society Texas Center hosted “SuperEverything*,” a film that uses live music and explosive lighting to highlight problems with modern Malaysia and the world.

“SuperEverything*” was created by The Light Surgeons — a group of British multimedia artists — and Ng Chor Guan, a Malaysian musician who provides the live music and sound effects.

“There is a chemical reaction when you play with different artists, different venues; it gives you a different inspiration,” Guan said. “It’s like a chemical reaction when it goes together today; tomorrow it might be a different feeling. I think that’s the beauty of live music.”

The film was fast-paced and multi-layered, with colors flashing above the heads of interviewees and glimpses of Malaysian life.

Malaysians of different ages, genders, religions and backgrounds discussed important issues familiar to Western audiences: consumerism, deforestation and the dangers of an isolated society in a world seemingly controlled by the Internet.

“At first, I was a little concerned that I was going to be overwhelmed with so much going on, and I was kind of amazed at how it still contained a narrative.” said patron Joui Romano. “You can follow a story going on while you’re still taking in the images and the music so you’re kind of hit in all sense, but in a balanced way where it all falls into place.”

“(The film) was very interesting because it’s a way of experimenting with perception and how we look at space and things moving within that space,” said first-year new media graduate student Evan Lee. “It’s another way of how you communicate an idea to an audience.”

According to the official website, “SuperEverything*” was part of the 2012 Houston Cinema Arts Festival, an annual event that was held Nov. 7 to Sunday showcasing films by and about artists.

It was hosted at the Asia Society Texas Center, an organization that — despite having existed since the 1970s just opened the doors to its first permanent establishment in April 2011.

“We wanted to do more to actually engage the community and share what is a very important part of the world right now,” said director of communications Patsy Brown.

“We decided to raise the money to actually give us a space where we could share more, not only in terms of a small lecture space, but for performing arts, visual arts, business and policy-type topics as well as education. It’s a place that covers a lot as far as different areas of our mission.”

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