A Drinking Bird Mystery deals with a drinking bird mystery, of course. But there’s another mystery: how good music transforms a movie, how it elevates a movie. Especially if the music itself is a crucial part of the story. Just like in the Charles H. Bennett’s case.
Boyd F. C. Bennett father was a musician and a talented composer, based in upstate New York. His legacy continues embodied by the Bennett Conservatory of Music in Croton on Hudson, which he co-founded in 1950. It is also transmitted into the future encoded as musical scores. Having been granted access (courtesy Charles H. Bennett) to some of them I discovered that this is exactly the kind of the music that I had been looking for.
A kind of intelligent playfulness marked by occasional darker undertones characteristic for Boyd F. C. Bennett’s compositions perfectly matched the persona of the protagonist, the ambience of locations – and the story itself.
Since I’m a musical troglodyte I badly needed an expertise – and someone able to actually play the score right. The help was impersonated by Jan Bokszczanin, thoroughly educated Russian born Polish musician and organ pipe virtuoso (follow him, he is not only a great musician who plays in places like the Notre Dame cathedral in paris, but also a devoted teacher and local activist). All the music by Boyd F. C. Bennett used in the movie is played by Jan.
There is also other composers’ music in A Drinking Bird Mystery, like this beautiful Alexandre Tansman’s Sonatina, recorded by Jan Bokszczanin and Paweł Gusnar on New Polish Music for saxophone and organ (Musica Sacra Edition, 2007).