Hitch a Ride with the Merriest Band of Gypsies
Conductor Elvis Schoenberg (the musical miscegenation of the King of Rock: Elvis Presley ... and the King of Early 20th-Century Dodecaphonic Music: Arnold Schoenberg) has artfully collided musical genres in such a strange-bedfellows way (Prokofiev meets Creedence, Hendrix meets Strauss, The Stones meets Copland, and on and deliriously on) that simply by having created these juxtapositions, his epic pieces often make social commentary without even necessarily intending to, and they ALWAYS offer up a sometimes broad, sometimes subtle, humor.
Now his ensemble, The Orchestre Surreal, is ready to capture that vision on film. Think concert film / mockumentary, by way of Zelig, The Office, or This Is Spinal Tap. Theatrical in a deranged-circus-Fellini-German-expressionistic-John-Waters-burlesque way, the Orchestre Surreal is as cinematic as they come for the symphony world.
Launched in 1997, the Orchestre Surreal came out of composer Ross Wright 's mission to create a project that would strip away the barriers of cultural, generational, and artistic divide, and promote the message of open-mindedness through art. A student of the music of composers such as Arnold Schoenberg and the New Music school (his Bachelors Degree is from Cal State Northridge, and his Masters is from Cal State L.A.), as well as a devotee of Frank Zappa, the peculiar mixture of Wright's musical influences helped to further shape his vision.
Now to date, the OS has produced 3 CDs. They've played venues the likes of the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, The El Rey Theatre, the Famed Whiskey a Go Go, as well as club venues where they barely fit on the stage, like clowns stuffed in a clown car, which is almost too apropos for comfort. They have been the recipient of the Los Angeles Music Award for "Best Rock Opera" and "Best Orchestral Arranging" for their scripted show (one of three) Symphony of the Absurd, L.A. Weekly's "Pick of the Week," and a coveted spot on Music Connection's Top 100 Unsigned Acts List.
Recently, members of his acclaimed orchestra spoke freely and frankly for the camera (just a little sneak preview of what's to come), in an effort to uncover the mystery of Elvis, and the perplexing phenomenon that is The Orchestre Surreal.
In collaboration with Who’s On First Films, the orchestra is presently raising funds for their feature-length film. There will be many aspects to this film, and the very next order of business is to shoot a live performance at the legendary El Portal Theatre in NoHo, which is already in the books for a January 2017 shoot.
Who's On First Films has a working relationship with several major distributors, and is currently in negotiations with distributors, with the intention of garnering a theatrical release.
Here's where you can be of help!
Make your contribution today
Other Ways You Can Help!
Never fear! For those who can't contribute monetarily, there are many ways you can help bring this project to fruition. One of the best ways is by spreading the word about the Orchestre Surreal's movie and fundraising efforts, and direct anyone listening to this site. Share it on Facebook! Share it on Twitter! Share it on Instagram! Share it on your blog! Email your best friends and tell them about it! Doing that will be extremely helpful.
If you've ever wanted to be a part of making a movie, here's a chance to be part of something grassroots, independent, and community-strong!
And we'll see you at the movies!
Meet Elvis himself!