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 Posted:   Jul 17, 2021 - 7:49 PM   
 By:   Sehnsuchtshafen   (Member)

"Specter of the Rose" is a 1946 film noir thriller written and directed by Ben Hecht.
It stars Judith Anderson, Ivan Kirov, Viola Essen, Michael Chekhov, and Lionel Stander, with choreography by Tamara Geva, and music by George Antheil, of course. Morton Scott as musical director and Charles Maxwell orchestrated Antheil's score (uncredited).

As has already been mentioned in The Juggler thread, the waltz from Specter of the Rose has been rerecorded. Twice actually, there is even a newly arranged version in three movements.


The Chandos recording (released on: 2019-01-04)
The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra with John Storgårds

Arranged by Werner Gebauer for Violin & Piano (2018)
Duo Odéon

I. Maestoso

II. Poco allegretto

III. Più vivo - À la valse

Conducted by Charles Gerhardt
London Cinema Symphony Orchestra
Produced by George Korngold
(Varese Sarabande VSD-5207)

Here is a film segment: Final Ballet


See also these George Antheil topics:

George Antheil, Cecil B. De Mille & Boris Morros – Union Pacific (1939)

THAT BRENNAN GIRL aka TOUGH GIRL (1946/1951) - also presenting some clips from other Antheil scores


 Posted:   Jul 18, 2021 - 8:46 AM   
 By:   Rozsaphile   (Member)

I've yet to see the film, but it's fascinating to consider the evolution of "La spectre de la rose."

1. A wistful poem of French Romanticism by Théophile Gautier.
2. A beautiful setting by Hector Berlioz in his song cycle Nuits d'été.
3. A ballet by Michael Fokine of Les Ballets Russes set to music by Carl Maria von Weber (Invitation to the Dance) as orchestrated by Berlioz.
4. The film by Ben Hecht with entirely new choreography by Tamara Geva and music by George Antheil.

The first three instances are all dreamily romantic. The nightmarish noir stuff comes in only with the movie. Something was in the air in 1946.

 Posted:   Jul 21, 2021 - 11:21 AM   
 By:   Sehnsuchtshafen   (Member)

Here are selections from the actual soundtrack (with only minor dialogue and soundeffects)

Main & End Titles

Suite 1

Suite 2 (Final Ballet)

 Posted:   Jul 23, 2021 - 3:40 AM   
 By:   Sehnsuchtshafen   (Member)

Here is an interesting bit of info from the Chandos booklet (CH10982) about SPECTER OF THE ROSE:


An enticing conglomeration of camp acting,
ripe dialogue, tongue-in-cheek humour, and
sinister fantasy, the low-budget film noir
Specter of the Rose was written, directed, and
produced by Ben Hecht for Republic Pictures
in 1946. The film’s score was composed by
Antheil, orchestrated by Charles Maxwell,
and conducted on the soundtrack by the
studio music director, Morton Scott. Taking
its title and inspiration from the short ballet
mounted by the Ballets Russes in 1911, which
was based on Berlioz’s orchestration of
Weber’s piano piece Aufforderung zum Tanze
(Invitation to the Dance), the film tells the
gripping tale of a male ballet dancer who is
suspected of having murdered his first wife
and seems on the verge of dispatching his
second wife in the same manner.

It is often incorrectly stated that the
Berlioz / Weber score features in the movie,
but this is not the case. The composer’s
original music is strikingly eclectic, and
embraces a dark romanticism, a harmonic
opulence redolent of Ravel, and even (in
places) a Stravinsky-like modernism. In 1947,
Antheil rearranged and re-orchestrated
some of the film’s seductively lush dance
music as a concert waltz, in which form it
was premiered on 6 November 1948 by the
St Louis Symphony Orchestra under Vladimir

© 2019 Mervyn Cooke

End quote.

You can listen to the Chandos recording of this waltz in the first post of this thread.
The YouTube video is embedded there.

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