The Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra

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The Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra
OriginSt. Louis, Missouri, United States
Years active2003–present
MembersMatt Frederick (brass)
Robert Laptad (percussion)
Matt Pace (piano, brass)
Heather Rice (strings, piano)
Brien Seyle (strings)
Emma Tiemann (strings)

The Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra is an ensemble of composers and musicians based in St. Louis, Missouri. The ensemble composes and performs original scores to accompany films of the Silent Era, and composes and records soundtrack music for contemporary films.

Origins and History[edit]

The ensemble was formed in 2003-04 in St. Louis as "The Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra" during the break-up of members Robert Laptad's and Brien Seyle's band The Whole Sick Crew and members Matt Frederick's and Matt Pace's band The Baysayboos. During this time, the ensemble composed and recorded soundtrack music for local short films. In 2005, Frederick moved to the East Coast. The ensemble added former Whole Sick Crew members Luke Deichman, Beth Dill and Jeremy Quinn, and dropped the "Motion Picture Orchestra" from its name. In 2007, the Rats & People released a full-length album of songs The City of Passersby. 2007 also was the year that the ensemble premiered its Webster University-commissioned original score and live accompaniment to Buster Keaton's film Go West. Finding silent film accompaniment more rewarding than conventional bar shows, the ensemble ceased to write and perform lyrically-based music. Readopting the moniker "Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra," the ensemble focused itself primarily on composing and performing original scores to films of the Silent Era. Frederick returned to St. Louis in 2008 and rejoined the ensemble. In 2009, multi-instrumentalist Heather Rice (formerly of the Carpark Records band Light Pollution) and classical strings musician Emma Tiemann joined the ensemble. In addition to its silent film scoring and accompaniment, the ensemble continues to compose and to record soundtrack music for contemporary films.

Discography (As "The Rats & People")[edit]

  • The City of Passersby (Full-Length CD) (2007)
  • I Sang to Heather Nethereye (Split 7-inch) (2007)

Silent Era Film Scores (As "The Rats & People Motion Picture Orchestra")[edit]


External links[edit]