Aldo Shllaku- Film Composer, Canadian, Expat
Think of a movie that truly moved you. Try to remember the scenes that had an significant impact on you. Recall the emotional response you experienced during those sections of the film. Although you may not remember the soundtrack specifically, without a doubt, if you were to sit in a room and watch those scenes again without any music, you would be disappointed. On the other hand, if you were to play that soundtrack by itself without images, the emotions felt at the time you watched the film would come flooding back. Such is the power of the soundtrack. It does far more than accompany the actors on screen, it enhances or even creates the emotion the director is attempting to convey to the audience. So vital is the music of a film that without it, everything lays flat, two dimensional and empty.
The artistry and genius behind the soundtrack for many films coming out of Hollywood just happens to be a Canadian.
The Canadian Expat recently was given the opportunity to speak to soundtrack composer Aldo Shllaku. From Montreal, Mr. Shllaku is an inspiration to all artists who try to make a living through their art. Mr. Shllaku moved to Los Angeles after graduating from the University of Montreal in 1992. He attended the University of Southern California LA Music School and graduated in the top 1 percent of his class in 2002, and while at school he developed his networking skills and leveraged the friendships he made which provided him with a start in the industry and steady work. He was quick to note that being a Canadian has been advantageous for his career.
Curious about the creative process behind composing for a film, we asked Mr. Shllaku about how he creates his musical scores. “The director is the one that drives the score. But, of course, they are all very different. Some are very hands on, others give [the composer] full rein.” He pointed out: “The composer/director relationship is a very collaborative process, it is almost philosophical. We are both driven to elevate the scene and feed off of each other’s energy.”
When asked if he would recommend to Canadians that are moving abroad to get involved with the Canadian expat community, his reply was immediate and definitive: “Absolutely! No Question! The Canadian community here is very strong and well respected. We are known for our work ethic and our talent, and in this industry, that reputation means everything. You can be a graduate from the best school and have all the contacts in the world and while this is immensely helpful getting started, if that work ethic and talent are not there, you simply will not go far.”
We invite you to take a look at his website and listen to some of his scores/soundtracks.
From the Aldo Shllaku website:
Aldo Shllaku is an award winning classically-trained film and TV composer. He holds a degree in music composition from Université de Montréal, during which time he was part of an international selection of composers for the New Music Sessions, in collaboration with Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne. Once in Los Angeles, Shllaku completed the prestigious Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television graduate program at the University of Southern California (USC), where he was awarded the program’s highest honor, the Harry Warren Award.
Aldo Shllaku has composed music for many feature films, documentaries, and TV programs. His music can be heard in films such as, “Lupin III,” “Paranormal Asylum,” “The Blue Hour” and “On a Dark and Stormy Night.” Shllaku’s music scores have received the Gold Medal for Excellence at the Park City Film Music Festival for “Pirate for the Sea,” “Still Water,” “Trespassing,” “A Kiss on the Nose” and “Paperboat.”
Shllaku’s creations are an amalgam of the traditional and modern, an eclectic musical vocabulary presented through orchestral artistry and the latest in music technology, resulting in music scores that have been described as evocative, sophisticated, poignant and ultimately satisfying.
Aldo Shllaku http://aldoshllaku.com/