Grammy-nominated, award-winning composer, Michael Abels, recently sat down with David Bryan on Bryan’s Curiosity Invited Episode 4 appearance. Among the topics they discuss in their 1 1/2 hour conversation is what it is like working with writer/director, Jordan Peele.
As Abels puts it in his Curiosity Invited appearance, “Jordan is the smartest and funniest person in whatever room he walks into. …and he has an “uncanny talent for meeting a person and understanding what they ought to be doing.”
Bryan, has similar praise for Abels stemming from working together in education years earlier. Before launching Curiosity Invited, career educator Bryan was the Co-Founder and Head of New Roads School in Santa Monica, CA.
“When Michael came to interview for a teaching position, his exceptional talent was immediately apparent, even to a non-musician like me. His musical range is astonishing.” Equally if not more impressive, “Michael speaks about musical language in ways that reach those of us whose musical ability maxes out at playing the radio.”
Bryan offered Abels the job of Music Program Director at his school. “One of the best professional decisions I ever made.”
He is thrilled to see his former colleague, Abels, being recognized by a large audience. Fans are eager for the July 2022 release of Peele’s latest film, NOPE. Peele’s first two highly acclaimed films, GET OUT and US (Peele won an Oscar for the GET OUT original screenplay) were outstanding. Among the most acclaimed aspects of both films is the original Abels-composed-music. Smart money suggests that tapping Abels a third time will be similarly charmed.
The Peele – Abels discovery story is the stuff of … well, a Hollywood discovery story. After listening to an Abels’ composition, Urban Legends, on YouTube, Peele tracked down Abels to speak with him about working on GET OUT. Seeing Abels’ genius across an enormous musical range (Yes, even opera. Abels collaborated with none other than Rhiannon Giddens on OMAR.) Peele invited Abels to create genre-defying magic, first with GET OUT, and then with US.
Other notable artists with New Roads School connections that Bryan hopes will sit down for a chat on Curiosity Invited include actress Dakota Johnson, poet Amanda Gorman, musician/composer/producer, DJ Bander, Austrian filmmaker Katalin Hanappi, and playwright and Artistic Director at PlayPenn, Che’Rae Adams.
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