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ChrisAfonso

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Posts posted by ChrisAfonso

  1. 6 hours ago, Marian Schedenig said:

    Perhaps there's a correlation between used CDs and food.

     

    Well, combing endless shelves of moderately-sorted media in cramped basements makes one hungry...

     

    Great to hear it's going again, that store always was one of the fixed points of each "recent" London trip (along with Forbidden Planet, and tkts for some bargain hunting). Hopefully again soon.

  2. Just saw the film yesterday. Originally, when it was announced, I was indifferent to the concept (and in the "sure go ahead, but why remake a classic?" crowd). Approaching the release, I got a bit more excited about a new take on the material, especially after the reviews started coming out overwhelmingly positive.

    But I was not prepared how much a story (and score!) I know very well for a long time, would keep me anchored in my seat gripping the armrests, and needing quite some time to collect myself afterwards. A real masterpiece with quite a number of really inspired choices for a new perspective on the material that work really well (standout: "Cool").

    The sheer visceral quality of the filmmaking is amazing (and a real departure from the '61 film, as far as I remember it).

    I get Karol's view that the raw realism and the heightened musical drama sometimes don't completely mesh successfully (and occasionally thought so myself during the film), but IMHO that's a very minor point of concern - both the "movie" and the "musical" work so well, that it immediately pulled me back in each time I got momentarily tripped up by the contrast.

  3. Great book, Chris! This score had a significant place in my discovery of film music, being one of the first non-Williams soundtracks I got. Awesome to have the full score to study.

    Already the first cursory thumb-through yields lots of interesting details to discover (alphorn, wtf :D). Reading along with the recording, there seem to be a number of podium changes that are not reflected in the score (like the horns in Firestorm, bars 25-26) - do you have any insights on that?

  4. 10 hours ago, Richard Penna said:

    Remember it happened too with the temple scene in KotCS, directly lifted from WotW. Both may just have been director requests for all we know, but either way, he still nicked material from himself.

     

    Though it does go against the copypaste-principle, I can't hold this instance against him - while it starts as a direct lift, he continues the cue in a different way and leads into this glorious brass finish :) (and as both scores involve aliens, a case could be made for topical appropriateness)

  5. Thanks again Maurizio and Tim (and Sarah) for this very entertaining and enlightening interview! :)

     

    I was a bit confused about her comment about the E.T. horn part not having the "Bells up!" in it, as I remember it being in the Signature edition score - turns out, while it's in the "Adventures on Earth" S.E., it's missing in the otherwise identical ending in the "Flying Theme" S.E. (which was performed in Berlin)...

  6. Ernö Dohnanyi's magnum opus "Cantus Vitae" contains quotes from the "Marseillaise" as well as the "Internationale", both fighting it out in a sort of "battle of ideologies". Thrilling piece - sadly there isn't an official recording available that I know of...

     

    Puccini quotes the (beginning of) American anthem a few times in "Madama Butterfly".

  7. 2 hours ago, Matt S. said:

    A question for our JWFAN members from Germany:

     

    Would it have been inappropriate for Williams to have the orchestra perform something from "Schindler's List?"  As an ignorant American I wonder if there were legitimate cultural sensitivities at play in deciding the program.  It is, after all, one of his most famous and successful scores, and he LOVES telling the story about the better composers being dead and all. 

     

    Not at all, it has been performed here multiple times, and is one of JW's most cherished compositions, same as elsewhere. The film, like others (e.g. Downfall, The Pianist, etc.) that depict this period in a serious way, is well regarded. It's the comedic handling of the subject matter that makes us squirm uncomfortably in our seats, like buddy-Adolf in Jojo Rabbit.

     

    And the story made it into the Berlin programme booklet at least, as the final punchline of the text ;)

  8. 19 hours ago, heritage said:

    (...), Emmanuel Pahud (...)

     I think they don´t like film music. (...)

     

    Counterpoint: He recorded an album with Alexandre Desplat, half of which consists of film score arrangements ;)

     

    3 hours ago, Thor said:

    True, but I do worry about THE FABELMANS in all of this busy schedule, even though there should be room for it, technically.

     

    I'd hope getting away from his studio for a while and visiting new places does refresh his creative impulses!

  9. 14 hours ago, Yavar Moradi said:

    For anyone interested, the 1999 German cast recording is pretty inexpensive secondhand: https://www.discogs.com/Alan-Menken-Stephen-Schwartz-James-Lapine-Disneys-Der-Glöckner-Von-Notre-Dame-Die-Höhepunkte-Der-W/release/5982656

     

    The English cast album recorded in 2015 does seem rather harder to find... https://www.discogs.com/Alan-Menken-Stephen-Schwartz-Brent-Alan-Huffman-The-Hunchback-Of-Notre-Dame-Studio-Cast-Recording/release/9157797

     

    And I'm not finding the German 2017 recording on Discogs easily, but here's a review of it with a cover image:

    https://www.musical1.de/news/nun-auf-cd-der-gloeckner-von-notre-dame/

     

    Yavar

     

    Most of this has already been mentioned, but I have to second the strong recommendation for the 1999 "Glöckner" cast album. Sure, the German vocals need some getting used to, but musically it's just so far superior to the reworked '15 version of the show! I was hugely excited when the US cast album got released (finally, the musical with its original lyrics!) and then quickly deflated when listening to it and noticing that a) many great new songs from the '99 version were cut or lessened, b) the orchestra sounded a lot smaller, and c) they tried to make up for that by amping up the drum kit and piano, which (at least for me) makes it sounds even smaller and "poppier".

     

    The incredible ending to Quasimodo's "Wie aus Stein" (Made of Stone) alone makes it worthwhile, no comparison.

     

    I haven't heard the 2017 German album, but have seen the new show in Berlin - musically it's the same as the 2015 US one. A good musical in its own right (and some of the new songs are worthy additions), but the '99 version is just so much better.

     

    (on the original topic: mightily looking forward to the Legacy Collection :))

  10. I'd argue that the answer greatly depends on how you define "elegant" - if you mean "refined and colourful, ever changing orchestration and subtle motivic integration", this would fit more with Williams's output. But if you define it as "use the simplest fitting means to achieve maximum effect" (a.k.a. the Mozart way), this fits better with the music of Goldsmith. (Or as he is reported to have answered the question of how to write good music: "You put something on the top... something on the bottom... and something in the middle.")

  11. "the best" is hard to say - it's worth getting both the original 70s version on Varese Sarabande, and the 2000s version recorded by Gil Shaham on DG, as they're sufficiently different both in some details of orchestration and development, as well as recording sound (dry vs lush).

    4 hours ago, karelm said:

     

    It's hard to tell where you are in a piece when it is completely brand new to you.  You might enjoy Aaron Copland's "What to Listen for in Music" or Leonard Bernstein's Young People's Concerts tv shows from the 1950's and 60's which are on youtube and very well explained walk through of elements of music and some masterpieces.  Classical music doesn't always come quickly or easily but rewards effort.

     

    This is a great recommendation (and thanks for pointing out the Copland, have to look into that)! The book version of Bernstein's YPC played a big part in opening up my musical education.

     

    On the main topic of the new concerto, there's not a lot to say that wasn't already said ;) I was a bit lost (especially during the first movement) during the first watch, but on subsequent listens it quickly becomes more familiar - especially the beautiful last movement! Worthy addition to the Williams concert canon.

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