Q&A with Diego Campos

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By DAVID SWEARINGEN

What is your music experience?
I was 7 when I began my first piano lesson with Mrs. Julie Michie in Lockhart. She taught me all the basics of piano playing and performing. When I moved to Stephenville, I began private tutor lessons with Mrs. Leesa Hammitt. She has been an exceptional mentor. She’s always been willing to tell me where I’ve done too much or not enough. 

How did you become interested in composing music?
Before I composed, I wanted to be a filmmaker. I would always film the mundane activities of my family’s day-to-day life. When a member of a film group (JVG Pictures/Clare and Mary Vining) passed out flyers about a film they were producing and directing, at the homeschool co-op that I attended. I emailed them to ask them if they wanted an original film score. They said yes and so that is when I, with my inexperience, began composing. I still do some film and would like to expand my knowledge and skills in that as well.

Who is the film group with whom you began working?
The film group is JVG Pictures, they have since changed their name to Vining Sisters (Clare and Mary Vining) Productions/Christian Cinema Series. When I responded to their flyer, and they accepted my invitation to write music for their short film, this formed a friendship, as we well as a working relationship. That first project was Cyber Attack. Their next project was named Seek First and I also created the music for that film. That film won a few nominations, including being nominated for Best Score for a Student Short Film by the Great Lakes Christian Film Festival.

What is the name of the new film you have just completed with the Vining Sisters?
The new film is named The Light of Virsa. This film was written and directed by Christian teens with an all Christian teen cast (with a few exceptions) and crew. It’s a coming of age movie that has a Christian influence. It is about a young teen boy, Cayden, who must rescue his only surviving relative, his sister. She has been kidnapped by the minions of an evil Lord Azcar. These minions try to waylay Cayden, but he perseveres, and along the way he learns that although he himself is not capable of defeating darkness in the world, the Light is, and it is only by means of character, perseverance, and trust that he can let the Light work in him to save his sister and make him the messenger of light and hope for Virsa. How did your creativity help you with writing the score for this movie?First, I really thought about the theme. Then the writers gave me the script to read so that I could get a feel for what happens in the film. I began to compose some melodies for each of the characters. Some of my earlier creations I wound up not using, but they helped me to build something better. How do you compose using a full orchestra?The equipment I use to compose gives me the ability to have a virtual orchestra. I compose the music and the software performs it. Don’t be confused, the music isn’t a collection of others’ work which I have appropriated. Everything heard in the score is original.How long did it take to make the film and write this score?This film has been in production since February 2019, two years. COVID slowed down some of the production, but Clare and Mary stayed with it. They put in about 10,000 hours with filming, editing, location scouting, and casting. I estimate that I put in about 4,000 hours towards the making of the score. I also produced Trailer #2 for the movie. 

When and where can we watch The Light of Virsa?
The film will be shown at the Dallas Cinemark 17 and IMAX theater at 11819 Webb Chapel Rd, Dallas on March 29 and 30, other dates may become available. Tickets can be purchased on the Vining Sisters website at www.viningsisters.com . Soon after the film will be available for rent/sale on their website. It’s a 90 minute Adventure/Fantasy Film suitable for all audiences.
After it is done in theaters, it will be available for purchase/rent to stream at www.viningsisters.com.

Where can we find your music and the music for the movie?
The Deluxe Edition of the album will be found at my BandCamp on the day of the release (March 29th): https://diegocampos.bandcamp.com/You can find more information about me at my website https://www.diegojcampos.com/

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