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Everything posted by Marcus

  1. Topic title is misleading. Williams' representatives are simply prohibiting unauthorized arrangements of intellectual property. This is only fair, as Williams should retain right of approval (or disapproval) of any arrangement made of his music. Regrettably, there are many sub par arrangements of his music in wide circulation. Hopefully this will serve to promote the HL signature editions (as well as officially approved arrangements).
  2. A lovely work! The cantilena that also closes the piece sounds almost like a contorted version of "Moonlight" (from Sabrina). Makes me wonder if it could have been intentional? As much as I love his first violin concerto, this is (obviously) the more mature work of the two. Bravo, Maestro.
  3. Now, I absolutely adore Shostakovich, but his film music really isn't the best part of his oeuvre, and John Williams' film music is, for the most part, far more accomplished, both as pure music and as music written to enhance and coexist with another artform. Some of Shostakovich's early film music efforts are quite outstanding, but as has already been mentioned, the scores he wrote for propaganda films often feel rather tepid and uninvested, and, dare I say, emotionally dishonest.
  4. The film is now out, and the score is available from all platforms, as well as in physical format. It's been an incredible journey, and I am so happy and grateful to have been part of it. The soundtrack album was a particular joy to assemble, as it gave me the opportunity to shape a generous selection (almost 80 minutes) of music written and recorded throughout the scoring process into a unified whole. All in all, I penned about 4 hours and 15 minutes of music for this score throughout the editing process, and the soundtrack reflects my own musical preference from all of these. We've been blessed with some truly stunning orchestral and solo performances. The film will hit the international market later this year, and I hope many of you get to see it. Here's another cue, featuring the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, and the rich, beautiful acoustics of their new concert hall:
  5. Greetings, and thanks for your thoughtful comments. We were definitely conscious about avoiding a more pristine "Hollywood" sound aesthetic, as André wanted this film to be far removed from mainstream fantasy drama fare. So I guess the aesthetic we went for is in some ways a more 'contemporary concert' approach. Having said that, we were tasked with the challenge of having to mediate two separate orchestras and recording venues due to scheduling, and subsequently try to find a balance between the two, which meant minimizing the differences, and I suppose that might account for some of the aspects you take issue with Glad you seem to enjoy the music regardless, and would certainly welcome opportunities to embrace different recording aesthetics in the future, should they arise. Best, Marcus
  6. Thank you. What's interesting to me about that, is that save for the brassy send off of one of the main themes towards the end of the credits suite, I'm probably as unconscious of any channelling as I am of my own voice, whatever that may be... I guess any voice is an expression of one's experience, preferences and personality. But from a writing perspective, especially in a film score, you just respond to the challenges at hand. Which means that it's all just music, regardless of its connotations. Having said that, Williams has been a deeply formative influence on my writing, and even though an influence is something you write your way through, some "residue" will inevitably remain, no matter how sublimated that influence becomes...
  7. Another few items: Here's one of the score's several main themes: And a lengthy finale and end credits suite, featuring concert settings of most of the score's thematic material:
  8. Seems it's also up on YouTube. Here's a little teaser of sorts:
  9. Greetings, all of you! I wanted to share with you my first major feature score, written for André Øvredal's MORTAL. The film will be out in theaters worldwide this year, and the soundtrack is already up on Spotify (and elsewhere eventually; CD will be available as of next week). It's been a great privilege working on this, as André Øvredal is such an incredibly gifted director (Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Troll Hunter, The Autopsy of Jane Doe), and also deeply passionate about film music. The score is performed by the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra and the Budapest Film Orchestra, and features solo work from Nils Økland (Hardanger Fiddle), Ditte Bræin (Soprano) and Kåre Nordstoga (Organ). Hope you'll enjoy! https://open.spotify.com/album/4ULpjMKTlWxQAZZyxvEJpV?si=TwRrf8y0SKOu3TSsRjyQCg
  10. This is a miraculous album. Imagine being able to craft such imaginative, vital and energetic new takes on this music at 87! There's incredible flair and elegance on display here, but also deep thought -and a simply stunning (and daring) command of how to pit a violinist against an orchestra. What a marvelous, generous gift.
  11. The situation is roughly this: All the new music is Williams. All the old music repurposed from HP1 is Williams, but adapted (to fit the film) by William Ross.
  12. Only manuscript. 8 staves for smaller cues, up to 20 for the busiest ones:
  13. I'm currently scoring a fairly big feature film, requiring 110-120 minutes of orchestral music, some of it highly complex. I do all of my work in very detailed short-score with no additional orchestrators, sending each page off to only two people: An engraver providing orchestral parts, and an assistant providing mock-ups (and digital elements integral to the score, all of which I first notate and describe to the best of my ability). It's a small team, but a very effective one. For my concert work, it's all manuscript, but most of it gets engraved courtesy of my publisher.
  14. Categorically no. He simply isn't. (Doesn't mean you're not entitled to prefer his music over Williams', which is merely a matter of taste)
  15. I think The Adventures of Han is a delightfully fresh and fun piece that achieves quite a lot of different things at once, and in subtle ways. Connective tissue and seemingly throwaway moments actually hearken back (or is that forward?) to a lot of the action writing in the OT, but just in quick glimpses/foreshadowings. It's a sort of in medio res piece, and might seem less tightly constructed than it actually is, which is a rather apt way of having form serve as a kind of characterization. The piece is structurally who Han is as a character: Someone who suddenly finds himself in the middle of a (mis)adventure. On the surface, it's music of impulse, whim; it's designed to feel rhapsodic, even though, as has been pointed out, it's actually a kind of rondo. On the other hand, it's Williams also showcasing his less romantic, more modern style. The motivics are more concerned with rhythmic twists than long-lined lyricism. It's a less heroic, more haphazardous take on the elements that constitute Luke's theme. A sort of curveball Luke in minor mode. It's clever and catchy, and bridges the old and the new in a very elegant way.
  16. As soon as I'm asked! Haven't done much film scoring as of late, but scoring two now, one of which will have a major international release... It would take no small measure of luck, and the right connections, but I'd do it in a heartbeat.
  17. Oh, definitely. And I really hope we get to see and hear as many and as varied musical takes on them as possible. It's a fun challenge to pay homage to a legacy, while at the same time retaining a sort of playful disobedience towards it.
  18. Hmm... Just listened to Powell's score. I'm very glad he was encouraged to tread elsewhere, rather than just lightly, but I have to say there's something about his approach that to my ears also highlights certain shortcomings of a more "modern" approach (not to slight Powell's efforts in the least; my guess is he's written exactly the score he was asked to). The use of percussion gets very tiring very quickly, and instead of energizing the musical flow seems to detract from it. And the harmonic language feels for the most part sort of emotionally flat. It just ends up feeling very light and inconsequential, I guess. Then again, it might be a very light and inconsequential film... In the process of scoring a major film myself at the moment, I have of course encountered a temp track that is mostly informed by scores from the last few years (lots of Zimmer). And while I respect and like much of it, I can't help but lament a tendency to make things streamlined and unobtrusive. It's a style that co-exists very comfortably with just about anything you'd have it accompany, as so much of it is about latching on to steady rhythms and inoffensive 'pop' chord progressions. But it does tend to sacrifice having an integrity of its own, subsequently preventing the music from adding new, individual layers. I guess that's the aspect I "miss" the most...
  19. Dear Pierre, Thank you for your sincere and heartwarming post. I think there's a deep lesson in it for everyone. To overcome one's struggles, and to find joy and gratitude in life.. Well, that seems to me just about as meaningful as life can get. Also, for what it's worth: There's true lyrical beauty in the piece that you posted, and true talent. May it serve you well, no matter what you pursue. Warmly, Marcus
  20. If this is indeed a snippet of Han's theme, it does seem to share some DNA with the Han & Leia love theme (or whatever you may want to call the reverse Tristan-melody 😉)...
  21. Good for Joe! We were at Manhattan School of Music together, he was an undergrad while I was doing my Master's there. The nicest, sweetest person imaginable. I think he was set on becoming a film composer even back then. I remember him writing a thesis piece that was sort of an hómmage to Hollywood. Even though he's made a name for himself doing lots of crossover projects, I guess he's one of the relatively few Hollywood composers of his generation (at least to my knowledge) with a degree in composition.
  22. This is much more than mere allusions to existing themes. Rather, these are truncated versions of existing JW tracks, and sound almost like a scratched disc skipping ahead... Sounds like the very laziest way of avoiding copyright issues...
  23. The Harry Potter Children's Suite is essentially Williams' take on a kind of "young person's guide to the orchestra". It is as masterful as it is colorful, and is about as far removed from a "sketch" as you can get. On the contrary, it represents ways of developing the musical material even further, all the while exploring the orchestra in delightful detail.
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