The North Naples composer back in the Olympic spotlight
A man from north Naples is back in the Olympic spotlight. This time, composer Alex Goldstein created the music for the Israeli rhythmic gymnastics team. Goldstein has been composing scores for Olympic athletes since 1980. In 2014, he created the music for 26 skaters from 11 countries. Many of the athletes he worked with won gold medals. American figure skaters Sarah Hughes and Gracie Gold and ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White and Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto are some of his best-known clients.
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For the Israeli rhythmic gymnastics team, Goldstein sets up music for the individual athletes and the group event. The songwriter said it’s a great balance between finding music that athletes love and music that works well with their routines.
“They like a certain type of music,” he said. “When they are happy, they do everything much better.”
Goldstein saw and participated in great changes in Olympic music. In 1980, the Russian gymnastics team changed from live piano music to recorded music.
“It was a very painful process for everyone because the pianist can see and wait for everyone and the band can’t wait,” he explained. “They hardly believed me at first that I could do something similar. When I practically rehearsed what the pianist was doing, they started to believe me. So for the Olympics I changed all the music and after that there was no way to go back. I have shown what is possible.
For years Goldstein worked by cutting and gluing duct tape. Now he does everything on the computer.
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“When I took computer training I found that you could earn a lot, a lot more than what I could do on tape,” he said. “The possibilities are infinitely greater. “
Natalia Bestemianova, is a former competitive Russian ice dancer who, along with her partner Andrei Bukin, won the 1988 Olympic gold medal. She is also a 1984 Olympic silver medalist, four times world champion, three times world silver medalist and five times European champion. Goldstein created her Olympic music and continues to compose sheet music for it.
“I have known Alex since he was 16 and have always been in awe of the music of the Olympic champions he prepared,” she said through a performer. “Throughout my career as an ice dancer with my partner Anrdrei Bukin, Maestro Goldstein has performed many of our competitive musical programs, including the arrangement of Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on the theme of Paganini, which was specially recorded by an orchestra from Alex’s score. After we stopped competing, Alex composed many music numbers for our performances in the company we co-founded with my husband, Bobrin’s Ice Theater. We continually work with him as we choreograph programs for current figure skating competitors and are always impressed with his superb professionalism.
Goldstein’s entire life has been anchored in music.
“I grew up in a building with 72 apartments and 65 were occupied by musicians,” he began, describing his childhood in Moscow.
His father was a horn player in the Bolshoi Orchestra and his uncle played the French horn at the Red Army Theater.
“Above our apartment were three flute players; under us was a pianist. On one side there was a Russian theater maestro, a violin player, and on the other side there was a bassoonist and my friends were all studying music, so I had no choice.
When Goldstein was only six years old, he began studying at the Gnesin School of Music in Moscow, one of the most prestigious music education centers in the world. He completed his musical studies when he graduated from the Gnesin Russian Academy of Music with a master’s degree in conducting, composition and French horn.
Goldstein moved from Moscow to New York in 1991. He and his wife moved to Naples in 2005 where the music composer, conductor, songwriter, record producer, film producer, director, editor and founder of ‘ABG World and SportMusic.com continue to produce documentaries and compose music.
His references make a long list. He has composed musical scores for more than 25 feature films, silent classics, around 300 documentaries, animation, as well as radio and television shows, circus and stage performances, commercials and sports programs at worldwide. He has won numerous Herme and Telly awards for his films. He could have won even more.
“After getting 10 awards, I don’t spend time sending my films to awards,” he explained. “There is not enough space.”
For this month’s Olympics, Goldstein worked remotely. The team sends him videos of the routines. They make music suggestions and he makes recommendations. Then sits down in his office in North Naples surrounded by business computers and gets to work. He says his experience helps get the job done smoothly and quickly.
“I have enough experience to predict what’s comfortable and what isn’t,” he said. “It’s a question of technique. If you know how to do it, that’s okay. To make a good program, the person must have a very good musical education. Music school is not enough. They should know the composition and analysis of musical form. When you listen to music, you need to understand its construction. I do it quite quickly because I just have to listen to the composition once and for all and imagine a new structure and imagine how it will be done.
It’s also about understanding athletes and routines.
“Sometimes it’s easier to have different types of music for different types of movements,” he explained. “Sometimes I have music and I need to add different sounds or drums to make a better connection or for a certain place to have more accents to play. So I add accent and music and it makes a lot more sense for the performer and the audience.
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With the Tokyo Summer Olympics just beginning, Goldstein is now looking to the 2022 Winter Olympics. He is now working on music for solo and pair ice skating and for ice skating competitors. ice dancing. It will create scores for teams from USA, Russia and Japan and possibly other countries depending on the athletes who make up the teams.