Margaret Pomeranz: Movie Masterpieces

Margaret Pomeranz says hosting the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra’s Movie Masterpieces was one of the “most exhilarating experiences” of her life, and lovers of cinema can relive the experience on Foxtel this weekend.

Movie Masterpieces, which was conducted by Guy Noble and hosted by Margaret Pomeranz, saw the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra (ASO) perform almost six decades worth of cinematic classics at a sold-out Festival Theatre in May. The night included John Williams’ eternal scores for Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, Ennio Morricone’s moving theme from Cinema Paradiso, Maurice Jarre’s epic overture for David Lean’s equally as epic Lawrence of Arabia and Wagner’s Flight of the Valkyries, which was famously used by Francis Ford Coppola in Apocalypse Now. Pomeranz, the former co-host of The Movie Show and At the Movies with David Stratton, introduced each piece and shared stories about the compositions and films in that warm, humorous and engaging style that made her one of this country’s most famous cinema personalities. “I had the best seat in the house,” Pomeranz says of hosting the event on stage with the ASO. “The musicians were fabulous. Guy was hilarious. The music was fantastic. I really loved hearing all that music again. It conjured images and emotions from all the films we’ve loved over the years. I had a ball.” You can tell that some of the pieces truly moved Pomeranz when watching Movie Masterpieces, which screens on Foxtel on Sunday, August 7. “I was tremendously emotional about a lot of that music,” she says. “The one that really got me in the end was Bruce Rowland’s theme from The Man from Snowy River. It’s so lovely and it’s just great hearing that again.” Noble chose all the pieces for the ASO to perform on the night and Pomeranz thinks he did “amazingly well”. If they were to do it again, Pomeranz says she would love for there to be a focus on Australian composers. “I’m a real fan of the Australian Cezary Skubiszewski. I think he makes wonderful music for films, and there’s one that I particularly love:  the theme from Ana Kokkinos’ Blessed. It’s beautiful.” Pomeranz, who admits she was terrified before hosting Movie Masterpieces, even called her former co-host David Stratton to calm her nerves. “I was terribly apprehensive about doing this, because I’m not a natural getting-on-stage performer. I’m used to television with an autocue; having to fly by the seat of my pants was extremely nerve-wracking,” she laughs. “I even had to ring David Stratton beforehand to say, ‘Am I going to be all right?’” Stratton and Pomeranz are regular visitors to Adelaide for the Adelaide Film Festival to host their incredibly popular quiz nights. “We are indelibly joined at the hip to the Adelaide Film Festival. I think it is truly one of the best film festivals in the world. It’s done something really lovely for me, which is a continued association with Adelaide. And I love that and I look forward to it.” Movie Masterpieces with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra Sunday, August 7, 7pm on Foxtel Arts foxtelarts.com.au aso.com.au

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