The soundtrack of “Explanation for Everything”, the film which garnered accolades in both Venice and Chicago, is finally available on various platforms. For this film, composers Gábor Reisz and András Kálmán teamed up once again to create a unique musical score.
Originally, the plan was for the film to have no musical score. However, while writing, Gábor Reisz found inspiration in both modern and classical Hungarian music, which led him to the choral works of Lajos Bárdos. One folk song adaptation, titled “Szellő zúg”, had a significant impact on the storyline, shaping the role music would play in the film.
Building on this idea, Reisz collaborated with András Kálmán, the keyboardist in their joint band, to work on additional choral pieces. This led to a key creative decision: to make a children’s choir the foundation of the film’s score. These songs were performed by the children’s choir of Kodály Zoltán Elementary Music School, High School, and Art School.
“When we first heard the songs we’d written being performed live by a children’s choir, we were shifting between goosebumps and tears. Right from the first listen, it was clear that the choir added a great deal to the film, both in terms of crowd dynamics and representing the voice of youth in this story,” said Gábor Reisz.
The film’s soundtrack also features a striking, flowing canon composition by Zoltán Jeney titled “Madárhívogató”. As for the more “traditional” film scores, they were rooted in an intro chord progression by András Kálmán and Gábor Reisz. This eventually led to the development of two significant pieces in the film, including the end-credits song, “Explanation for Everything.”
The director recounted, “We worked for months on the end-credits music. For us, this song is not just about moving on; it also serves as a cry out. It took us a long time to find the right tone. Ultimately, incorporating the choir helped us achieve our goal. It’s very sad that young people have to find themselves amidst this chaotic, terrible social discourse, but they also represent hope for us.”