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 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 6:16 PM   
 By:   SillyString   (Member)

This is a bit random, but aside from Tchaikovsky notoriously being one of the first to employ the instrument (think of Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies from The Nutcracker), are they're any major hard-hitting scores by hard-hitting composers that really utilized this instrument -- particularly Goldsmith. I can't think if he's ever featured it as a solo in his scores, or not.

Any notable mentions are welcome.

 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 6:19 PM   
 By:   Hester_Prin   (Member)

Korngold. All the time.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 6:39 PM   
 By:   antipodean   (Member)

And John Williams in the Harry Potter scores ("Hedwig's Theme" etc.)

 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 6:42 PM   
 By:   SillyString   (Member)

And John Williams in the Harry Potter scores ("Hedwig's Theme" etc.)

Ha -- I had forgotten Williams and the usage there. I've always been much more fonder of his original score than the other more popular ones. Maybe the celesta was responsible most? Probably.

 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 6:50 PM   
 By:   Hester_Prin   (Member)

In the Criterion double DVD of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; Desplat has a 15 minute section devoted to the score where he mentions this instrument along with bells, soft electric guitar, harp, and other subtle sound makers that he prefers in his scores.... all of which is very evident in this masterful soundtrack for this masterful fable.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 8:35 PM   
 By:   ryankeaveney   (Member)

Edward Scissorhands.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 8:49 PM   
 By:   TerraEpon   (Member)

Herrmann used it a lot (Twilight Zone comes to mind).

Probably my second favorite instrument, after the bass clarinet.

 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 9:05 PM   
 By:   William Stromberg   (Member)

It's featured a lot in Home Alone by JW.

 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 9:38 PM   
 By:   SchiffyM   (Member)

James Newton Howard used it in his score for "Lady in the Water." I happened to be working in an office across from the recording sessions and saw them loading it into a truck for transport. I asked the movers what it was, and they explained and demonstrated!

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 27, 2009 - 9:43 PM   
 By:   mrscott   (Member)

Isaac Hayes in Shaft. He claimed it was his favorite solo instrument. Can you dig it?

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 2:50 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

I think it was used frequently in the many "baroque jazz melancholy" scores of the late 60's and early 70's. Michel Legrand frequently used it, for example.

 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 12:36 PM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

This question sorely tests the sort of thing I once thought I was good at, SS.

The first thing I can think of outside the very good answers above is the one glissando Mancini did in his popular vocal arrangement of "The Days of Wine and Roses". Not much of an answer, huh?

Tonight I'll go home and look over my holdings list to see if I can remember any more, since I do like the instrument myself (after hearing it used prominently in TO BE PERFECTLY FRANK, a disc-jockey radio show that Sinatra did when his career was floundering. It twinkled in the background as he talked and he would sometimes address it as "Miss Celesta" or some-such.)

 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 1:22 PM   
 By:   Misanthropic Tendencies   (Member)

Jerry did use a celesta or celeste as I have seen it spelt also. It was in the rejected first score he composed for Escape From The Planet Of The Apes that Varese could have included on their new CD!!!! razz

Seriously, wasn't it a celesta for the source music in the Nursery scene in Logan's Run?

 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 3:22 PM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)


Seriously, wasn't it a celesta for the source music in the Nursery scene in Logan's Run?


Bingo. SaxPlayer gets a Princess Point.

 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 3:27 PM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

The most prominent, non-tonal use of celesta that comes to my mind is in at least 1 cut of THE NIGHTCOMERS. I might be remembering a xylophone doubled with something else, though....

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 7:45 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Anatomy of a Murder.

 
 
 Posted:   Sep 28, 2009 - 8:24 PM   
 By:   LRobHubbard   (Member)

Didn't Goldsmith use this in his TWILIGHT ZONE work - specifically, for BACK THERE?

 
 Posted:   Sep 29, 2009 - 12:49 AM   
 By:   Misanthropic Tendencies   (Member)


Seriously, wasn't it a celesta for the source music in the Nursery scene in Logan's Run?


Bingo. SaxPlayer gets a Princess Point.



Thank you - very lovely.

 
 Posted:   Sep 29, 2009 - 10:47 AM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

Didn't Goldsmith use this in his TWILIGHT ZONE work - specifically, for BACK THERE?

As if tailor made for SillyString's original question: I just remembered last night that he did use it prominently in "The Invaders" episode of TWILIGHT ZONE. (I don't remember "Back There" well enough)

And regards Herrmann, he used it very prominently in his "Outer Space Suite" for the CBS music library.

And I was way-wrong about THE NIGHTCOMERS. In "The Big Swim" he used a glockenspiel doubling a piano line, which sounds an awful lot like a celeste. Ditto for the end of Goldsmith's main title of THE SECRET OF NIMH.

 
 Posted:   Jun 18, 2019 - 5:54 PM   
 By:   DavidinBerkeley   (Member)

It's featured a lot in Home Alone by JW.

What I heard was an electronic keyboard version of a celesta.

And "Back There" featured plenty of harpsichord and piano, but no celesta.

 
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