Composer and Berklee alum Eric von Fricken hopes to charm the world with beautiful music, but for now is settling for latte art, a covetable shoe collection, and cleverly cropped shots on his Instagram, @ericchristian. The 23-year-old Bostonian touched based from LA, where he’s taking a break for the week to mingle with the movie crowd.
Q. What’s your background with music?
A. I started piano when I was 4 years old after my parents signed me up. Then I studied at The Music Studio in Albany, New York, where I took classical piano from 6 to the time I graduated high school. When I came to Berklee, I switched into film composition and writing. I still do classical piano on my own, but mainly just write music for commercials and TV. Right now I’m trying to break into the film industry.
Q. Have you written anything we’d know?
A. Unfortunately not yet.
Q. Is Boston a big hub for music composition?
A. Boston and New York are both really good for the advertising music scene. Commercial music is a pretty good gig as a freelancer, so being in Boston gives me access between the two cities.
Q. Who do you consider your composition idols?
A. I love John Williams and Hans Zimmer, of course. And Thomas Newman is probably the one I’ve been listening to most recently. I love the classic John Williams scores though. The original “Jurassic Park” is probably my favorite of all time.
Q. It must be a pretty niche industry to break into.
A. The film industry is really hard to break into, but once you’re in, you’re in. Writing for film is a specific skill, because it’s not like writing a song. It’s a formulaic method of writing. You’re not really writing for yourself, you’re writing to enhance the emotional quality of a picture. But once you have your first film, you’ll have a second and a third.
Q. What made you start using Instagram?
A. I was hanging out with a friend from Berklee, and I had an Instagram and posted terrible things like most people do, but my friend was really good and became sort of a local Instagram celebrity. She really made me feel the pressure to step up my game, so she taught me some editing tricks and how to take photos and what people look for. I got pretty into it starting last winter and maybe December, I was a “suggested user” and my account just blew up.
Q. That’s kind of the holy grail for Instagrammers.
A. For the most part, it gives you the street cred of Instagram. I had a small local following, but after Instagram makes you a suggested user, people consider you legitimate. It makes it easier to get your name out there.
Q. You post a lot of fashion pictures.
A. When I first moved to Boston, I had a roommate that worked for Saks Fifth Avenue, and I was like, “Damn, I don’t know what size pants I actually wear.” He never bought anything off the rack and always brought his clothes straight to the tailors. I got a job in the menswear department and that taught me everything I know about fashion and fit.
Q. Best fashion purchase?
A. My Burberry leather jacket. I bit that bullet last spring. I can’t wait until fall so I can wear clothes again.