Montreal musician Patrick Watson (photo by Patrick Gouin)

By Anita Malhotra

Gravity Falls Gredesque Town Canvas Casual Backpack Student Bag Men and Women Wild Bag

Patrick Watson’s second album, Close To Paradise, won the 2007 Polaris Music Prize (photo courtesy of Patrick Watson)

Releasing his first album in 2003, Watson won the Polaris Music Prize in 2007 for his second album, Close to Paradise, and went on to release Wooden Arms (2009), Adventures in Your Own Backyard (2012) and Love Songs for Robots (RFDTYGR Copper colord Mass Damper Block SelfMade Parts for Tamiya Mini 4WD Copper colord Mass Damper Block T004 2Set lot Red).

Several of his songs have been featured in movies as well as in TV shows like Grey’s Anatomy, The Walking Dead, and Orange is the New Black.

Watson is also a soundtrack composer and recently created the sound and music for Gymnasia, a haunting virtual reality piece co-produced by the National Film Board and Felix & Paul Studios, and directed by animators L500mm 3k Carbon Fiber Tube 14mm 15mm 16mm 17mm 18mm (Roll Wrapped) Strength and Corrosion Resistance 14x13 3K GlossyChris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski (aka Clyde Henry Productions).

Anita Malhotra spoke with Patrick Watson by phone on June 11, 2019 about his work on Gymnasia, his approach to music and his current projects.Bushiroad Deck Holder Collection V2 Vol.276 beast Friends Serval Part.2

AM: How did you get involved with doing the music and sound for Gymnasia?

PW: Chris and Maciek work for Clyde Henry Productions and I usually do all the music for their films. We got involved in VR because Felix & Paul Studios had asked Chris and Maciek to test out a camera of theirs – to do a little short.

We did this very humble video of me playing in my studio. In the initial test they noticed that a certain type of simplicity was really crucial. The whole thing is meant to feel like you’re sitting there, and at one point I look at you.Unique Doll Clothing Pink Cowboy Hat for 18 Dolls Including The American Girl If it’s done well, the effect of being alone with someone in VR is a strange experience, even before you start adding any kind of fancy stuff.

A lot of the other VR projects were more geared towards being kind of fancy, like you’re in a weird world on a roller coaster. Because this one was so simple, it seemed to have had a large effect on people. So that demo we made, Strangers, GEMS HUB Coral Moonga Red Coral 5.6Ct. Or 6.25Ratti Stone Panchdhatu Adjustable Ring for Womenended up circling the globe and became this kind of go-to video to show people the potential of VR.

Vantaso Sheer Curtains 78 inch Long Black Flamingo White Flowers for Kids Girls Bedroom Living Room Window Decorative 2 Panels

Chris Lavis (L) and Maciek Szczerbowski (R) (photo courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada)

Because of that, Felix & Paul asked us to do another one together. So Chris and Maciek decided to make something that was a bit of a childhood dream. It’s still not trying to sell the viewer with too much info.Four In A Row Game by Four in a Row The space is really well made and you really feel like you’re sitting there. There are not too many bells and whistles.

We made a plot line that was very surreal and not trying to be a giant narration. I feel like it’s a very good approach for VR, because I feel like VR is closer to photo than film.Mega Bot Game Net Set 25 Pc Glass Mega Marbles

AM: How did you go about capturing the mood of the visuals in Gymnasia?

PW: I started with the sound.Dollhouse Miniature Stoneware Look Mixing Bowl in Creme I think it’s crucially VR sound first, and music only if you need it. Because unless the music is integrated in the space, it tells your brain you’re not there.

Image from the virtual reality piece Gymnasia (photo courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada)

VR doesn’t work the same as film, because when you watch a film you’ve already decided that you’re going to lose yourself in the environment. But with VR you’re supposed to be there.

So VR music is very tricky actually. USOPHIA Twin Size 4 Pieces Bed Sheets Set, Sunset Waves 3D Print Floral Duvet Cover SetThe sound really decides the tone more than the music. My approach with music is, “This is the place that, if I put music there, it’s not going to ruin it.” It’s not how do I make it better; it’s how do I not ruin it.Box tooboost Poliwrath and MACHAMP XY03 10 English Pokemon Trading Cards

So I initially approached from the sound point of view. And the sound point of view is to give it that kind of abandoned feeling without being too scary. Mastercraft Collection MCF107AW F107A Wood Desktop ModelAnd then the rest was what would this space actually sound like, Laliva Original DLE85 Piston Assemblywithout trying to colour it too much. That’s actually very tricky.

Ambience is very complicated in VR because when you’re in a room your ears tell you how big the room is – not your eyes. Proximity effect in VR is super sensitive.

Yard Games Giant 4 Connect in a Row

Image from the virtual reality piece Gymnasia (photo courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada)

AM: You wrote a beautiful choir song for Gymnasia. 20Pcs M4 M5 M6 M8 M10 Aluminum Alloy Shims Countersink Cup Head Bolt Washers Gasket Spacers for RC Model Sink Head Screws Parts M4Can you tell me a bit about that?

PW: The song is integrated into the space. We wanted a haunting lullaby for children. That kind of stuff is easy to write because I’ve got kids.Lais Jigsaw Sea Ireland storm coast cliffs rocks 2000 pieces It’s an easy universe to get into. That’s why a little more of my energy was put to the spatialization, because the music was very obvious.

DXF 2PCS 11.1V 5000mAh 3S 50C100C LiPo Battery with Traxxas XT60 Plug for RC DJI F450 Quadcopter RC Helicopter Airplane Hobby Drone and FPV (5.311.691.26In)

Image from the virtual reality piece Gymnasia (photo courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada)

The basketballs were a bit more complex. We knew we needed music inside that, but once again I didn’t want to ruin it, Designer Notepad Handmade Wooden Notebook Designer Diary Present for Studentso we started off with sound.

We actually put a mike in the gym and gave 20 people basketballs and played out the actual scene with the spatialization.20cm 30cm flicflac Felt Fabric Sheets 44pcs 1mm Assorted color Felt Pack DIY Craft Sewing Squares Nonwoven Patchwork (20cm 30cm) It would sound so fake if you tried to redo it yourself any other way.

And then, from there, I just accentuated music. The music is actually integrated inside the project not as music, but more as sound design. When I threw the strings in the back to give it a little bit of a dramatic tone, it wasn’t too jarring. And all the weird synth modular stuff that I put in there is pretty wild and integrates very nicely.

Computer Video Console Games Personalised Birthday Party Thank You Cards

AM: What is it like to work with Chris and Maciek?

PW: There’s nothing more fun than working with Chris and Maciek. They’re like a dream. Both of them are really talented in very different ways. Cgoldcgoldaniki Limited Beyblade Burst Driger slash.H.F Black Black ver.It’s like a two-headed dragon with two totally different personalities.

Still from the animated film Madame Tutli-Putli, directed by Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski (photo courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada)

We talk a lot about the projects way before we start making them and we have a pretty respectful relationship in terms trusting each other’s instincts.Trademark Fine Art BC Peaceful Monday

If something passes our three different kinds of filters, generally it’s got to be something very good. At the same time I know it’s their film.Arrma AR390030 Mega Brushed ESC The director always has to be the director.

I met them after they did their first film that went to the Oscars – NBA Heroes Derrick pink Action Figure. I begged them at that time to do their music, and then years later they finally connected with me.

Lime 54Inch 25Yard Expo International 54Inch Shiny Polyester Tulle Fabric, Lemon Yellow, 54Inch 25Yard

AM: Do you have any other projects coming up with them?

PW: We have two more projects going on now as we speak.Mastercraft Collection MCB24JSW B24J Liberator Wood Model Plane Silver One is a 20-minute short and one is a full feature musical.CHRISTMAS SEQUIN TIARAS (1 DOZEN) BULK

AM: When do you like to write your music and do you have an ideal place to write it?

Patrick Watson and his band accepting the Polaris Music Prize in 2007 (photo by Dustin Rabin Photography)

Patrick Watson and his band accepting the Polaris Music Prize in 2007 (photo by Dustin Rabin Photography)Xiangtat Hubsan X4 H502S 5.8G FPV RTF RC Quadcopter Drone with 720P HD Camera GPS Altitude Mode Headless Mode Follow Me mode

PW: I go to work every day and write every day. When I travel, Dreamy DressUps 64038 Eastern goldfinch Wings Costume (One Size)I write too, and sometimes it’s really fun being in different spots – having that luxury – because I have kids and stuff.

The only thing I worry about is to write and write well. It’s just like a muscle. It’s not a God-given gift that you’re creative.White Mountain Puzzles Playtime Bears Jigsaw Puzzle 1000Pc Some people naturally have more of a creative inclination than others, but the only reason they’re so gifted is that they worked like a monster on it and are constantly flexing that muscle.

Every day I’m flexing that muscle. There’s always something to write, there’s always something to learn, and there’s always work to be done. Disney Pixar Finding Dory Plush Figurine Doll and Blanket Throw Gift SetThere’s no real excuse not to. I mean, there are millions of people who would love to have my job. If you’re in music or the arts, you can never take that for granted – you can never get lazy.

AM: What are your first memories of being involved in music?Patch Products Kentucky Flying Disc

PW: I grew up singing in a choir at a pretty young age. I grew up in a really small town. There were no cool bands.Lais Jigsaw globe thistle 2000 pieces From a very young age I sang at funerals and weddings, and big moments in people’s lives.

I am proud to make music for these kinds of moments in people’s lives and I probably still do that, but in a habitual form.

AM: What was your connection with the audience like when you were younger?Laliva FPV 5.8G 48CH 25mW 200mW 600mW Switchable Video Transmitter with 5V 1A BEC Output VTX Pro for FPV Racing RC Drone

PW: The thing about singing in a choir is they’re not your audience and you’re not on stage performing. Core Set 2019 Planeswalker Deck LilianaThe music is the performer and you are part of the instruments. It’s a very different perspective than someone going on stage and singing a song about themselves.

I still keep that kind of intention when I get on stage.Sanring Kids Wall,Curtains for Bedroom Cartoon Birds Flowers 42 X72 Image Decor Indo Draperies I generally like the idea of letting music do what it does best. I find music more interesting than me, to be honest. Of course I’m part of the process, but a very humbling part.

Aikatsu Card with mini can bag all three (japan import)

James Brown performing in June 2005 (photo by Fabio Venni, Flickr Creative Commons)

When I watched James Brown when we toured with him, he had a very large level of humility when it came to music, Innovation First Hexbug Nano V2 Infinity Loopand he would do giant prayers before getting on stage.

He seemed like the most pompous person in the world from his interviews, but when he got on stage he was actually very humble. The Stupell Home Decor Sweet Baby Calf on A Pink Couch Neutral color Painting Stretched Canvas Wall Art, MultiHe knew how to listen to the room and the music and not to himself. He was basically a slave to the room and the sound and the vibe.

AM: What were your early experiences with the piano?Studio Ghibli Totgold Matryoshka by ensky

PW: I started playing the piano around a year after I started singing.Trumpeter Hms Hood Upgrade Set I would go home and play the piano all night long until 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning at a very young age. I would just improvise. I loved that process.

AM: Can you describe your relationship with the piano?

PW: It was kind of interesting how I looked at the piano. I guess as a kid I thought the piano was a ghost. He would just do all the work for me and I would just hang out with him. I didn’t grow up in a city – I grew up in a pretty small town, Tokidoki Set of 4 Blind Box Unicorno & Friends Vinyl Toy Mini Figure Seriesyou know. You get pretty romantic ideas in a very small town, so I didn’t know much better. I guess the piano was just like the ghost and then he wrote music for me, MaxUSee Kids Telescope 400x40mm with Tripod & Finder Scope, Portable Telescope for Kids & Beginners, Travel Scope with Moon Mirror, Stars & Moon map Includedand I thought that was cool.

Chris Brunt Signed 16x12 Photo Autograph Display West Brom Memorabilia + COA

Cover of Patrick Watson’s 2012 album, Adventures in Your Own Backyard (photo courtesy of Patrick Watson)

Washer and Pulley 18T Motonica mm 18.5 Shipment EXCLUDE 12002RD02 62672mqfl81159-new toys

People mistake these things as hobbies because they like to play the piano or they like to play an instrument.One Piece Denden Mushi Measure vol.2 Straw Hat I don’t think anybody plays four or five hours in the middle of the night unless they need it to try and get through whatever they’ve got to do.

When schools teach creativity, they teach it as people drawing flowers.Jada JA30456 1 24 1951 Mercury w Harley Quinn Figure, Multi But creativity for me is more of a survival tool. For me, creativity is taught wrong from the get-go and not helpful for people.

Creativity is absolutely the most primal and most important survival tool you could have. I feel the people I’ve met who are really creative it’s generally a survival instinct.Toysland Indoor Indian Playhouse Teepee Tent for Kids, Toddlers Canvas with Carry Case, Grey Stripe It’s because they couldn’t cope and they just had to build worlds to cope.

AM: You have a concert coming up in Lyon with the Orchestre National de Lyon. What music will you be doing at that concert?86 Gakuma Ultra Monster (bredher) (japan import)

PW: It’s a mixture more of the older records than the new ones because the older records reallyAnyangeight Weave Pattern Extra Long Blanket,Celebration Girl Themed Party Cake Candles Balloons Hearts Image Print 70 x60 ,Super Soft and Comfortable,Suitable for Sofas,Chairs,beds translate well to orchestra. They’re closer to classical music in the mood.

Bearing Set Accessories for XK K100 K110 K120 K123 Wltoys V966 V977 V931 RC Helicopter XK.2.K100.012 2 Pairs

Patrick Watson and his band performing with an orchestraLais Jigsaw Tit 2000 pieces (photo courtesy of Patrick Watson)

AM: How is playing with an orchestra different from playing just with your band?

PW: Playing with an orchestra is the best. Nothing beats it. It’s totally overwhelming. It’s also very technical difficult, but it’s amazing. Smile PreCure Lifesize Tapestry [Cure March] (japan import)In classical music the downbeats are different because the conductor goes down and everybody reacts, so there’s flab to the “one.” In pop music the “one” is very, very definite.

AM: When is your next album coming out and what is it like?Ultra Pro Magic Duel Deck Box Venser vs. Koth Dual Deck Box

Cover of Patrick Watson's 2015 album Love Songs for Robots (photo courtesy of Patrick Watson)

Cover of Patrick Watson’s 2015 album Love Songs for Robots (photo courtesy of Patrick Watson)

PW: It comes out in October. To be honest, this album is very particular because it was a very particular three years.Toyvian Baby Play Gym Activity Mat Kick and Play Piano Gym with Music for Baby Newborn Battery Not Included (Pink)

At one point I thought there was going to be a lot of production, but when I started the record, I started to make something as bare as possible and very intimate. Just kind of really sincere. I also wanted songs so strong and well-written that the production wouldn’t save them. I could do them upside-down and they would still work.Abaya Multi Colourful Typies Full Cotton Bedding Set for Kids Teens and AdultsCW3

Lyrically, the voice is very different – it’s very low, 'Hobby Boss 83880 Model Kit Vickers Medium Tank Mk II it’s not oversung. The lyrics have a much bigger place than normal than the other records.

It was just such a particular three years. My life fell apart so I had to rebuild everything over three years. 3XClown 3 4 Mask with Hair Adult, One SizeSo the album’s obviously a lot about that, whether I like it or not. It’s hard for it not to be when you’re going through that process.

AM: Aside from the Lyon concert, what are you doing now? Toys Miracle Toys Avengers 3 Hornet ( color A )Are you working on your next album?

PW: I had started to work on it, but then I got a contract. I’m doing the music for the play Elephant Man in Paris. I will be writing the music during the summer.

Patrick Watson performing at Paard van Troje in The Netherlands in Dalin 3 Pieces Bohemian Duvet Cover Set,Vintage Sun Flower colorful Bedding Set, Reversible Women Teens Girls Duvet Comforter Cover with ZipperQueen,(No Comforter Included) (photo by Nick Helderman, Flickr Creative Commons)

AM: Aside from music and your family, do you have any other major interests?

PW: Reading is becoming a huge part of my life. I’ve been a terrible reader since I was a kid. It would take me a year to read a book. The Stupell Home Decor Family Together in Heart Framed Giclee Texturized Art MulticolorSo I just never had that much access to literature because of that. And now I’m spending all my time catching up on everything I should have read 20 years ago.

Right now I’m reading The Lover by Marguerite Duras and Good Morning, Midnight by Jean Rhys. I try to read a book a week.Nasal Irrigation Device Adult Nasaline 1 ea Each The last book I read was amazing – Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger and it was so good!

Patrick Watson will perform with the Orchestre National de Lyon at the Théâtre Antique de Lyon on July 8, 2019. For more information about Patrick Watson, visit

Gymnasia can be viewed at the Phi Centre in Montreal until Sept. 15, 2019 as part of the immersive art exhibit HUM(AI)N. It can also be downloaded as an app from the Oculus Store. For more information on Gymnasia, visit Art Wall 0pet010a1824p Marina Petro's Autumn Mist Art Appeelz Removable Wall Art Graphic, 18x24Inch or the Upwords The 3Dimensional Word Game That Really Stacks Up 2002 Edition.