Exclusive Interview: Thomas Bergersen on 'Two Steps From Hell' Performance in Budapest

  • 18 Sep 2023 3:11 PM
Exclusive Interview: Thomas Bergersen on 'Two Steps From Hell' Performance in Budapest
On September 27th the outstanding musical compositions of Thomas Bergersen and Nick Phoenix will resonate in the Papp László Budapest Sportaréna.

The internationally acclaimed composers' collaboration gave birth to the formation of Two Steps from Hell, known for creating music for trailers of films such as Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Star Trek.

Making their debut in Hungary, the band redefines orchestral performance: youthful, exciting, and innovative. A diverse range of musical themes unfolds, occasionally infused with Celtic influences, rock and metal sounds, or cinematic melodies. 

1. Two Steps From Hell started as a composer duo in the film industry. Which films or projects had a significant impact on shaping your music and style?

I come from a classical background and listened to a lot of film music composers growing up. All the great masters as well as the contemporary masters of film music have shaped my musical language, but as you grow older and more confident in your own choices in life you develop your own style and own little quirks and personality. That's when it starts becoming interesting.

2. How do you build your concert shows, and what challenges come with creating such a massive live production?

We have been lucky to have such amazing people around us who handle everything for us. Tomek productions with Sandra and Martin have been critical in creating these concerts and of course Semmel who took a chance on us. We are very blessed to be doing what we are doing.

3. Your music evokes various emotions and moods. How do you find the balance between epic, dramatic, and heartfelt music in your compositions?

I don't look for a balance, I look for a way to break through the barriers and limitations that we are programmed with. I look for ways out, and for ways to express myself in manners not possible with words. Music is the ultimate freedom to me and I let every piece of music take its own path. 

4. The name "Two Steps From Hell" is powerful and has a large fan following. How do you feel this name defines your band and what it represents?

We never thought we would have such a big following. It just grew over time. I think in retrospect I would have called it something else but it is what it is now and I'm just grateful to have been a part of it.

5. What are your plans for the future regarding Two Steps From Hell projects? Any new musical challenges or collaborations on the horizon?

Currently I am focusing on this tour and we will see what the future brings. I love to write music and will never stop as long as my body and mind are working. Whether I write under Two Steps or Thomas Bergersen is irrelevant.

6. How do you inspire each other when working together with your composing partner, Nick Phoenix, and how do you share your ideas during the composition process?

It's a common misconception that we work together. We don't. I write my music and Nick writes his and we release it as a compilation of music. I have focused lately on my own label, Thomas Bergersen where I am releasing most of what I'm writing nowadays, but in my most prolific TSFH time I wrote so much music that has become quite popular with our fans. I've had the privilege of composing around 90% of the most popular TSFH tracks, which have become the cornerstones of the brand.

7. Your music often has an epic and cinematic quality. What was the moment when you first realized that your music could have an impact on films and other media products?

For as long as I remember I have been fascinated with orchestral music. I remembered hearing complete symphonic music in my head when I was just a little boy. I always knew what I wanted to do, I just had to learn how to do it.

8. Live concerts provide fans with an experience that's hard to replicate in other forms. What message do you have for the fans preparing for the concert in Hungary?

It's not your typical classical music concert. It's a celebration of music, meaning we encourage everyone to join in and sing, dance and be a part of it all. It's a collective effort of bringing music together as an interactive experience for both the band and the audience.

Tickets for the concert on 27 September: eventim.hu

 Photo: Dita-Vollmond

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