Ajaneesh Loknath: East European flavour and Western classical history are the reasons behind choosing Budapest for UI

Ajaneesh Loknath along with filmmaker Upendra has camped at the musical city to put together a 90-piece orchestra for the background score
Ajaneesh Loknath: East European flavour and Western classical history are the reasons behind choosing Budapest for UI

Budapest, a city with a rich musical heritage, has always attracted music directors from around the globe. In recent times, Indian filmmakers have increasingly chosen the Hungarian capital to record scores for their films. Films like KGF Chapter 2, Vikrant Rona, and Salaar , among other films benefited from Budapest’s unique sonic atmosphere, making it a go-to destination for those seeking an extra touch of musical magic. The latest to be added to this list is UI, which stands apart as the makers have enlisted a 90-piece orchestra for its background score. What’s more? Both the filmmaker Upendra and the acclaimed music director, Ajaneesh Loknath have set up shop in Budapest to ensure every note resonates just right.
According to producer Srikanth, UI is a melting pot of cultures, driven by the visionary Upendra’s unique perspective. The content demanded an innovative approach, to provide audiences with an unforgettable cinematic journey. “This decision to push boundaries led us to Budapest, where history is waiting to be made,” he says. So what is the X factor about Budapest? “It’s more than just a location—it’s a vibe, a symphony of tradition and innovation. With UI, we’re not just making a film; we’re crafting an experience, one that promises to redefine the very essence of Indian cinema,” he adds.

While Ajaneesh Loknath has previously been a part of an orchestra, this is the music composer’s first visit to Budapest. “Thanks to Lahari and their decade-long dedication to music, they grasped the significance of this moment,” says the music director, as he elaborates on why Budapest was the chosen backdrop for this auditory odyssey. “While other countries boast remarkable orchestras, Budapest holds a special allure with its distinct East European flavour and its historical ties to Western classical music. The authenticity of the musicians there, unlike the more cinematic approach in cities like London or Los Angeles, made it the ideal setting for UI.”

Ajaneesh talks about the creative process: “When envisioning the score for a film like UI, it’s like stepping into a world of vivid imagination, where cultures collide, fantasies flourish, and fascination knows no bounds. While I’ve composed music for films like Avane Srimannarayana and Vikrant Rona before, UI presents a whole new world.”

The composer recounts how, upon seeing the visuals, he approached the visionary director Upendra, who shared his enthusiasm for the orchestra at Budapest: “Upendra’s forward-thinking approach and his eagerness to explore new horizons helped us to connect. He admits, “We are not sure whether we can recreate this kind of cinema again, and that excitement fueled our collaboration.” Musically, the composer reveals that they’re blending organic orchestration with digital elements to craft a unique sonic palette for the film. “We’re infusing digital sounds to complement the organic orchestra, shaping tones that will add richness to its storytelling.”
With Lahari Films and Venus Entertainers bankrolling the project, UI starring Upendra as the lead has Reeshma Nanaiah as the female lead along with Murali Sharma, P Ravi Shankar, Achyuth Kumar, and Sadhu Kokila among others part of the ensemble cast. HC Venugopal is the cinematographer.  

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