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[Interview] – Chiara Vale – ‘The New Music’ – A Feature Film


Posted March 11, 2018 by

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A new Irish film, about a talented classical pianist with Young Onset Parkinson’s who joins a Dublin punk band, aims to shine a light on this rare and little known condition. 

“The New Music” follows the struggles of Adrian, a young classical musician with extraordinary talent, who discovers he has Young Onset Parkinson’s, a rare form of Parkinson’s Disease affecting sufferers under fifty. Despite this debilitating condition, Adrian( played by Dublin actor Cilléin Mc Evoy) joins a punk band as a keyboard player and rediscovers his life through music and love.

Filming was completed at the end of 2017 and the production team have launched a crowd-funding campaign to reach out to the public to donate what they can in order to raise money for the post production expenses of the film- editing, sound, music, marketing and festival entries. 20% of all funds raised will go directly to Young Parkinson’s Ireland in addition to all future income from the film. Young Parkinson’s Ireland is heavily involved with the film itself, having consulted on the initial script and they will also have the opportunity to approve the final cut of the film.

Italian writer/director Chiara Viale was inspired to write the story after her Father passed away having suffering from Multiple System Atrophy, a rare degenerative neurological disorder with symptoms similar to Parkinson’s.

It is her aim that The New Music will help to dispel the stigma around Young Onset Parkinson’s. It is believed that there may be as many as five hundred unaccounted for sufferers in Ireland.

Donations can be made here  on Gofundme: and regular updates will be posted on the following social platforms.

YouTube: The New Music on You Tube


To begin with, tell us about your upcoming film “The New Music”, what is it about? How did you get involved with the picture?

The New Music is a zero budget Irish feature film which follows the life of Adrian, a gifted classical pianist who has been diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease. To escape this reality, he moves to Dublin where he moves in with a punk band called the Cellmates. Adrian’s talent is expressed through the use of his hands so I wanted his illness to target his ability to play and after some research, I found out about Young Onset Parkinson’s, a rare form of Parkinson’s that affects people under the age of 50. Parkinson’s is widely considered a disease that affects the elderly and I was surprised to learn that lots of young people all over the word are suffering from it. So, I decided that The New Music had to be about this illness and it could contribute to raise awareness and shine a light on this condition.

Together with Philip Kidd (Producer, Director of Photography, Editor), I got in touch with Young Parkinson’s Ireland, with whom we’ve been working with ever since.  Representatives of Young Parkinson’s Ireland read and approved the script at pre-production stage and we are currently developing the film in association with them.

In September 2017 we started a crowdfunding campaign to cover the post-production expenses of The New Music, 20% of which is being donated to Young Parkinson’s Ireland.

Tell us about the cast, who is starring in “The New Music”?

Our protagonist Adrian is played  by Dublin theater actor Cilléin McEvoy who has also starred in a number of short films.

Martina Babisova is an actress and producer, known for Irish feature film “You’re Ugly too” starring Aidan Gillan and a number of short films. Jack Fenton had numerous roles in short films produced by students, and studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. Patrick O’Brien has acted in a umber of short films and  Irish comedy sketches.

Does this particular type of narrative represent something special to you? Why did you choose to write/direct this type of film?

I have a very close personal experience with rare diseases as my father passed away in 2013 with MSA (Multiple System Atrophy) a rare neurological disease for which, like Parkinson’s, there is no ultimate cure. In this script I dealt with feelings that my family and I have experienced first hand. I also attempted to give my interpretation of what someone afflicted by an incurable disease might feel, and how the ensuing feelings and behaviours impact everyone around them. I hope that The New Music will have the power to bring people together and create a space where these issues can be discussed, as well encourage a conversation around both living and dealing with rare diseases.

Have you experienced any great challenges with production so far?

The one big challenge we constantly face is managing to produce The New Music on no budget: this has limited us from the start in a number of ways and makes our crowdfunding campaign vital for the film to be finished. However, the DIY nature of this film is also what makes it special. The New Music has created a network of extremely talented, wonderful people who are working together for this project to come to life. I wouldn’t have made it this far without them. Our final challenge is to get our film released and to do that we need to fund our post-production. Any kind donations can be made here through our Go Fund Me page-

What are your influences as a filmmaker?

I grew up without a TV because my parents were against having one in the house, but we used to have a VHS player attached to a monitor, strictly used to watch films together.  Both my parents loved cinema, and I remember watching italian classics of directors such as De Sica, Rossellini, Scola and Tornatore. I also watched cinema classics with my grandparents. I became an avid reader at a young age and soon I started writing my own stories for my friends to read. I took inspiration from books, comics, japanese cartoons that I would watch with my friends and music. One of my first dream jobs was to write for music videos.

It took a few more years for me to develop a proper taste for cinema, but to this day the vital element of a film to me is still storytelling. I love those films that tell a story the same way as I wish I did, that put an accent on the psychological development of characters and can capture me emotionally. Directors such as Krzysztof Kieślowski, Anton Corbijn, Gus Van Sant, Nicolas Winding Refn, Tony Richardson, Jeff Nichols and Ben Wheatley have been a major influence on me both narratively and aesthetically.

When & where can we expect to see “The New Music”?

We will be submitting The New Music to national and international film festival from Autumn this year , so hopefully it will be coming close to you very soon!


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