KU expert to speak in French-British film series

LAWRENCE – Colin Roust, associate professor of musicology, is heading to London to introduce the screening of a film scored by the 20th century French composer about whom Roust wrote the first, definitive biography, “Georges Auric: A Life in Music and Politics” (Oxford University Press, 2020).

Roust will introduce the May 19 screening of the 1948 film “La Symphonie Pastorale,” which is part of a retrospective featuring eight landmark films representing the breadth of Auric’s prolific career as a film composer. The Auric festival — which has already featured presentations by the renowned film, television and theatre composer Gary Yershon and singer Dame Felicity Lott — began March 26 and runs through June 2 at the Ciné Lumière. The retrospective is one of several events celebrating the 120th anniversary of the Entente Cordiale, the historic alliance between France and England.

Ciné Lumière is operated by the Institut Français, which is the umbrella organization for the French Foreign Ministry’s cultural outreach efforts.

“La Symphonie Pastorale” was directed by Jean Delannoy, adapting a novel by André Gide about a blind woman who recovers her sight.

The film was part of the French delegation to the first Cannes International Film Festival in 1946, where it received the prizes for best film, best performance by a leading actress (Michèle Morgan) and best score (Auric). After his visit to the Ciné Lumière, Roust will continue on to the University of Leeds and Royal Holloway University for additional lectures on a forthcoming project about national, international and transnational issues in Auric’s post-World War II film career.