L.A. cinephiles sure are lucky. Every single night of the week here, we’ve got independent and repertory programming at places like UCLA’s Billy Wilder Theater, New Beverly, Cinefamily, Bob Baker Marionette Theater, Non Plus Ultra, the Vista, the Hammer, the Egyptian and now, very notably, LACMA’s Bing Theater, where Film Independent is about to start hosting a new film series called Bring the Noise.
This monthly event pairs musicians with classic movies to perform new and original scores live at the screening. Get your scrunchies and glitter pens ready, because the inaugural film is Todd Solondz’s black-comedy classic Welcome to the Dollhouse, with a live score from bubble-gum punk Seth Bogart of Hunx and His Punx. It’s a match made in juvenile purgatory, celebrating the trashy glamour of cinema’s most misunderstood teen.
Guest artist in residence T Bone Burnett will be teaming up with Film Independent curator Elvis Mitchell to find more once-in-a-lifetime pairings. Mitchell’s already had a LACMA hit with his Live Reads series, where he and director Jason Reitman dreamed up fantasy casts for live reads of classic film scripts. Those performances underscored how important a killer script is for a successful movie, because even with new stars playing the roles, the writing still sung.
For Bring the Noise, expect Mitchell to pick films with bold visual styles that practically beg for musical accompaniment. Welcome to the Dollhouse, Solondz’s first feature, begat the director’s characteristic kitschy after-school-special aesthetic, which he’s fine-tuned over the years, most recently in his 2016 Dollhouse follow-up Weiner-Dog.
Other musical artists waiting for their movie mates for this season of Bring the Noise are Michael Andrews, Jack Antonoff of Bleachers, Emily Kokal of Warpaint, Ulises Lozano of Kinky, Yacht and Nick Zinner of Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but I have to say I am most excited to see whether Mitchell gives Daniel Ash and Kevin Haskins of Bauhaus the honor of scoring a Bela Lugosi picture.
Welcome to the Dollhouse with a live score from Seth Bogart screens at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28, at LACMA’s Bing Theater, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire; $25-$50. filmindependent.org/events/bring-the-noise-january-2017.