WEST ORANGE, NJ — Composer Michael Vignola has previously produced short films that have been featured in festivals, but the premiere of “Daydreamer” at the Garden State Film Festival on March 30 was the first he was able to attend. The West Orange resident teamed up with director Timothy Parsons to create the video for his song, which comes from an album of his own music that he recently released.
“I was putting an album out and deciding what would be released,” Vignola said in a phone interview with the West Orange Chronicle on March 29. “A friend said ‘Why don’t we put together a music video?’”
Vignola said he gave Parsons control over most of the video, saying that he trusted the director’s vision.
“He was putting a lot of time into it and I had a good feeling about it,” Vignola said. “So I didn’t have too much input. It represents a lot of what I write. When I’m writing for myself, it’s pretty ambient so this was a good representation of that.”
The film, set to Vignola’s music, shows a man as he is searching for creative fulfillment. The music is piano-based, with the melodies driving the script.
“It’s about a young man’s journey searching for creativity,” Vignola said. “It’s showing that repetitive 9-to-5 job life and him trying to break out of that mold.”
In addition to writing and releasing his own music, Vignola writes the scores for movies, short films and television shows. Projects he’s worked on include “Silhouette,” “No More Lights in the Sky,” “Sonny Vicious,” “Narcissistic” and “The Hunt for the Zodiac Killer.” Scoring movies and television was something that fell into his lap.
“It was a natural progression,” Vignola said. “A lot of people said that my music would work well as a score, so I started doing it. It’s a collaboration with the director, so I talk to them and see what they want. Then I watch it and start writing. It’s me watching the film and reacting to it.”
He started playing the piano when he was approximately 10 years old, and eventually picked up the guitar and clarinet. Vignola also toured in bands before he started composing full time.
“It’s something I always saw myself doing as a kid,” he said.
Vignola said “Daydreamer” will be released on his website, www.vignolamusic.com, now that the premiere is over. He hopes to release another album soon, and several projects he scored will be coming out later this year.
“I’ve had a couple projects in film festivals before but they were further away so I was never able to go,” Vignola said. “It’s pretty exciting to be able to be there and see it.”
Photos Courtesy of Michael Vignola