The first ever overview of Sakamoto’s film work approved by the artist

                          Performed by the Brussels Philharmonic and conducted by Dirk Brosse

Supported by the Film Fest Gent’s World Soundtrack Awards, Ryuichi Sakamoto Music For Film is the third release from the series and second on Silva Screen Records. Each year an eminent film music composer is invited to present their work during the annual World Soundtrack Awards Ceremony & Concert closing event. As part of the celebrations, Film Fest Gent and partner Brussels Philharmonic record a CD of their music in advance of the concert. This year’s guest of honour is Ryuichi Sakamoto, at the end of October he will be the recipient of the festival’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Japanese Composer Ryuichi Sakamoto was already a celebrated rock-pop composer/pianist/singer in Japan when he conquered the international film scene in 1983 with his score for Nagisa Oshima’s Merry Christmas Mr.Lawrence, a film in which he also starred alongside David Bowie. Ever since, his work for leading Japanese (Oshima again for Gohatto) and international directors (Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor, in which he also played a part and for which he won an Academy Award for best Original Score, The Sheltering Sky and Little Buddha; Brian De Palma’s Snake Eyes and Femme Fatale; Pedro Almodovar’s High Heels; Volker Schlöndorff’s The Handmaid’s Tale; Oliver Stone’s produced television miniseries Wild Palms) revealed him as one of the most inventive film composers of our time.

For those films and many more Japanese titles that did not get released in the West, he conceived a unique approach of composing for the movies: a blend of splendid melodies, synthesizer work, traditional orchestral music, drum tracks, sound effects and unusual musical colors. Out of the striking contrasts of musical styles and cultures, he created standout scores that will never stop to fascinate and enchant us.

As composer, performer, producer, and environmentalist, few artists have as diverse a résumé and fan base as that of Ryuichi Sakamoto. Sakamoto’s work has spanned vast musical territories, from pioneering electronic music as a member of Yellow Magic Orchestra to crafting globally inspired rock albums, classical compositions, a stretch of minimal/ambient music collaborations, and over thirty film scores. His work has been recognized with accolades including an Academy Award, two Golden Globes, a Grammy, the Order of the Cavaleiro Admissão from the government of Brazil, and the coveted Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the government of France.

Throughout his artistic career, Sakamoto has collaborated with David Bowie, David Sylvian, dramatist Robert Wilson, author William S Burroughs, His Holiness The Dalai Lama and more recently with electronic artists Alva Noto, Christian Fennesz, Christopher Willits, and Taylor Deupree. Sakamoto also wrote music for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona and the 400th anniversary of the city of Mannheim, Germany and his stirring film opus includes Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence, Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor, Little Budha and The Sheltering Sky, Almodóvar’s High Heels, Brian De Palma’s Snake Eyes and Femme fatale, Iñárritu’s Babel and The Revenant.

Ryuichi Sakamoto’s legendary music was recorded at Flagey, performed by Brussels Philharmonic and conducted by Dirk Brossé. The recordings include tracks from Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence and

This unique compilation album will be launched during the 43rd Film Fest Gent and the 16th World Soundtrack Awards on 19 October, where Sakamoto will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

The album will be available from Tuesday 11 October at the festival at the official merchandising shop and various film music events and our online webshop.

Tickets and info World Soundtrack Awards

World Soundtrack Awards Gala @ Capitole Ghent – Wednesday 19 October – Tickets here
WSA Concert @ Capitole Ghent – Thursday 20 October – Tickets here

Release date – 28 October

Digital album: SILED1524


1. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence Main Theme (From “Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence”)
2. Endroll (From “The Last Emperor”)
3. Rain (From “The Last Emperor”)
4. The Sheltering Sky Main Theme (From “The Sheltering Sky”)
5. High Heels Main Theme (From “High Heels”)
6. Wild Palms Main Theme (From “Wild Palms”)
7. Acceptance (From “Little Buddha”)
8. Snake Eyes Main Theme (long version) (From “Snake Eyes”)
9. Bolerisch (From “Femme Fatale”)
10. Bibo No Aozora (From “Babel”)
11. Small Hope (From “Hara-Kiri (Ichimei)”)
12. Yae No Sakura Opening Theme (From “Yae No Sakura”)
13. The Revenant Main Theme (From “The Revenant”)