Film Score Friday 3/10/00
by Lukas Kendall
Fans of The Poseidon Adventure in Southern California, tomorrow
evening is your chance to see the film projected aboard the Queen Mary
(on which parts of it were filmed), as a benefit to raise funds for restoring
the ship. In addition to the screening, there will be special appearances
by Shelley Winters, Carol Lynley, Pamela Sue Martin, Stella Stevens, and
others associated with the film; a silent auction of Poseidon memorabilia;
and fun fun fun.
Admission is $35 (it's for a good cause); doors open at 5PM and the
screening is at 6PM. The event is in Exhibit Hall, Wharf Level Entrance
aboard the ship. FSM will be there (in fact, I personally will be there)
selling copies of our exclusive, limited edition Poseidon
Adventure soundtrack CD among the other displays and vendors.
For more information, call 562-435-3511. What more do you want from
us?!? To come to the screening!
I received a few questions recently about why Jerry Goldsmith did not
score either Reindeer Games (which he was originally going to do,
and in fact started some work on) or Wonder Boys (for L.A. Confidential
director Curtis Hanson). Goldsmith left Reindeer Games due to a
scheduling conflict with The Kid; the film was scored by Alan Silvestri.
As for Wonder Boys, the filmmakers decided to go with a more groove-oriented,
contemporary approach and decided to hire Christopher Young as a stylistic
A couple of upcoming concerts, one this weekend, the other around Memorial
There will be a concert of John Scott's chamber music this Sunday, March
12 at 4PM at the Church of the Lighted Window in La Canada, California;
The Armadillo String Quartet, flautist Robert Shulgold and guitarist Gregg
Nestor, performing. The program will include Scott's second string quartet,
In the Southwest, his flute quintet In Arcadia, and a suite from Beneath
the Mirror of Lake Baikal, an homage to the late Jacques Cousteau. Call
Gerald Fried's suite of music from the early films of Stanley Kubrick
(The Killing, Killer's Kiss, Paths of Glory and others) will be performed
live to picture during a concert by the Beach City Symphony on the night
of May 26 at Marfee Auditorium, El Camino College, Redondo Beach, California.
Stan Marguiles will narrate.
From: Nathan Henninger <email@example.com>
Love the comparison!!
To me the most obvious is there adventurous revolutionizing of orchestration
for film scoring in light of the standard hollywood sound (not straying
too far, but making it exactly their own distinct sound) and use of Leitmotif
(how to create obsession through repetition). Hermann makes bizarre, and
highly stylized combinations of instruments to get the exact sound he is
looking for...WIlliams also has this "liberated" use of the orchestral
Also, their shared admiration for William Walton (and stylistic
similarity to both composers) cannot be overlooked. Herrmann championed
recordings of Walton's music.
From: "Brian Mellies" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"The Day The Earth Stood Still" is not an electronic score,
as described, although it does employ two theramins.
From: "Christopher D. Wright" <email@example.com>
I just wanted to comment that the article which compared the careers
and music of Williams and Hermann by Snedden was a joy to read. I would
like to see more articles which give insight into the life and experiences
of our heroes, the great film composers. Williams and Hermann both have
such extensive and diverse backgrounds, and I am sure that there are just
as interesting stories to tell about some of the other greats out there.
Keep up the great work you guys do at FSM!
From: Sean Carpenter <SCarpenter@cpr.org>
Today's half-spurious, separated-at-birth comparison of Herrmann
and Williams makes quite a silly mistake: "The third and, perhaps,
most important common denominator between these two exceptional composers
is that their respective film careers were launched by an early association
with young and prodigiously talented film makers. In Herrmann's case, his
debut for Orson Welles' Citizen Kane (1941) and for Williams his first
collaboration with Steven Spielberg on Sugarland Express (1974)."
Considering that Williams had scored more than 30 feature films
over the course of 15 years before he worked with Spielberg on SUGARLAND
EXPRESS, it's absurd to claim that assignment in any way "launched"
his film career. And anyway, it wasn't until his second Spielberg collaboration,
JAWS, that Williams became more widely known - commensurate with Herrmann's
notoriety as a result of CITIZEN KANE. Not to mention that Williams' collaboration
with Spielberg has been a little more enduring and productive than Herrmann's
two films with Welles.
But then, I'm not much on this kind of trivial comparison anyway.
P.S. Can't resist one more hit:
"On the Sea and Monsters from the Deep Reverberant harp strings
characterise Williams' Jaws 2 score (1980) and Herrmann's Beneath the Twelve
Mile Reef (1953).6"
Reverberant harp strings (is there another kind?) characterize EVERY
score ever written having to do with deep waters.
Things to Come Review
the column earlier this week.
From: Kyle Beatty <firstname.lastname@example.org>
As an aside to Iain Herries' review of the Bliss disc: There is
a theme in "Miracle in the Gorbals" which to my ears has a kinship
with "Anakin's Theme" from that Star Wars movie.
From: Brooks Wachtel, WHY06@aol.com
I agree that "Things to Come" is a great composition.
One wishes that more of the score was available. One small correction,
"Things to Come" was written by H. G. Wells, but produced by
From: Sean Carpenter <SCarpenter@cpr.org>
Just a quick thank-you for the reviews posted on your site today.
This is the sort of thing I find most valuable (depending, of course, on
who does the reviewing) - and I especially like the brief reviews. I'm
glad to see this becoming a regular part of the site.
Umbrellas Question -- Answered!
From: Stephane Michaud <email@example.com>
YES, Catherine Deneuve was dubbed in "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg";
her singing was done by Danielle Licari, a French singer who came from
jazz, but was famous in her time for her wordless "vocalises"
albums. Sony Music released a lavish 2-CD soundtrack album, expanded and
remastered, to coincide with the 1996 restoration of the film, and it is
still available from, say, CDNOW.
Though Deneuve rehearsed her own songs for "The Young Girls
of Rochefort" (1966), her next musical with the same director (Jacques
Demy), something tells me they replaced her voice here as well. BUT, she
performed a song for real in last year's French farce, "Belle Maman",
and yes, she SHOULD have been dubbed!!
To answer to last
friday's question about Catherine Deneuve's singing, many will probably
be disappointed to learn that Ms Deneuve never sang a single note of "The
Umbrellas of Cherbourg". She was actually dubbed by a young french
singer named Daniele Licari. In fact, most of the actors in the movie are
dubbed. The soundtrack to "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg" is available
in France on a very nice 2CD set (Sony Classical - SM2K62678) featuring
the complete songs and score, the orchestral main title and lots of bonus
Legrand and director Jacques Demy later collaborated on two other
fascinating musicals: "Two young girls from Rochefort" (1967)
(Philips) and the magical "Peau d'ane" (1971) (Playtime). The
former features Catherine Deneuve, Françoise Dorléac, George
Chakiris and Gene Kelly! (dubbed like everybody else). "Peau d'âne"
stars Jean Marais and Catherine Deneuve. Both soundtracks are widely available
on CD in France, complete, fully remastered and handsomely packaged. Both
movies have been are extremely popular works for more than twenty-five
I strongly recommend "Two young girls from Rochefort",
one of Legrand's sunniest, most enchanting work displaying a wide range
of styles (toe-tapping jazz, bittersweet melodies, and a haunting piano
concerto to boot!) Once you hear his melodies, you'll never forget them...
"Peau d'âne" is a fairy-tale and features fewer songs but
a lot of underscore, also brimming with exquisite melodies.
Two more CDs, easy to find in France: a compilation (playtime) focusing
on Legrand's scores for director Jean-Paul Rappeneau (Cyrano, The horseman
on the roof), and Legrand's first score for Claude Lelouch: "Les uns
et les autres" (1980) (RCA) , co-composed with Francis Lai. This one
I find less interesting, although it contains some nice thematic material
Check them out.
Remembering George Duning
From: "FINN, BILL" <WILFIN@SAFECO.com>
I was very sad to hear about George Duning, especially that his
music was never really re-discovered by many of us before he passed. Along
with Alex North, Hugo Friedhofer and Elmer Bernstein he was among the first
Hollywood composers to regularly write scores based on an American sound
rather than on a European or Viennese one. And the lack of bombast in his
music probably helped him extend his career into the '60's. His two Star
Trek episode scores of course a lot of us know - they are quite beautiful
Unfortunately, like Friedhofer, Ernest Gold and any number of composers
who worked kind of in-between the Golden age guys and the Williams/Goldsmith
era, his music has mostly been ignored, especially by the record companies.
I was happy to have had the opportunity to meet Duning in 1993 when
he was in Indianapolis for 'George Duning Day' (Mr. Duning was born in
Richmond Indiana). He gave a short talk about his days at Columbia, dotted
with several amusing anecdotes and some film clips. I noted how keen his
recollection (and wit) were. He was in his mid-80's at the time, but you
wouldn't have thought it after talking with him - he seemed to have a personality
that somehow matched the tone of much of his music, understated, funny,
engaging and friendly.
Ricard Befan's John Williams website now has a comprehensive article
on the Hook score: "An Awfully Big Adventure: The Music of Hook,"
by John Takis. Find it at http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Palace/5170/special/hook.htm
Lee Holdridge will be the guest on "The Score" radio program
(host: Michael Enright; http://www.webspawner.com/users/thescore)
next Tuesday at 7:30AM Eastern time on WSIA New York, 88.9FM. A wide range
of his music will be featured. You can hear the program on Real Audio at
wsia.fm or www.silive.com.
Finally, visit the Music from the Movies website for a review of FSM's
Flam Man CD: http://home6.swipnet.se/~w-67269/pages/soundtrackframe_1.html
Have a good weekend!