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Elliot Goldenthal

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Just a reminder for anyone in Southern California that today through Friday, Goldenthal's newest work, “October Light” Adagio for Orchestra, will have it's premiere with Goldenthal in attendance.  I unfortunately won't make it.

 

Composer Elliot Goldenthal’s Note: October Light, Adagio for Orchestra(World Premiere)

In 1995, Carl St.Clair and Pacific Symphony commissioned my Fire Water Paper: A Vietnam Oratorio, a commemorative work reflecting upon the 20th year of cessation of the Vietnam conflict. In 2014, Pacific Symphony premiered my Symphony No. 1 under the baton of Carl St.Clair. For this I will be forever grateful. In this work October Light, Adagio for Orchestra, instead of fanfare and brio, I looked inward to dedicate. Although the work is not programmatic, it casts an autumnal shadow. When I got a message that I was commissioned to honor Carl, it was the same week that I got the news that Tim Landauer, the principal cellist of Pacific Symphony had passed after a long illness. He was the cello soloist under the baton of Carl St.Clair at the premiere of Fire Water Paper. With that backdrop, my commission took on a bittersweet assignment.October Light is a title from a John Gardner novel, where there is a phrase that referred to “the pull of the earth” that stuck with me as well as October’s long shadows and the crystalline, sometimes blinding autumnal light in the northern hemisphere. Beyond the minutiae of analysis, the motivic component the listener can recognize is the expansion of a repeated single tone followed by an intervalic whole step up. This simple motive is heard throughout the work with its treatment of juxtaposition of registration with cello and the harmonics of the first and second violins and higher woodwinds. The other element is the present, circular repetitions in the solo violin and woodwinds. The circular motion, the dichotomy of low and high registers find themselves inexorably reaching and pulling for a blinding light that can coexist with the “pull of the earth.”

 

October Light, Adagio for Orchestra (World Premiere) Composed: 2019

World premiere: Dec. 5, 2019, with Carl St.Clair conducting

First Pacific Symphony performance: Dec. 5, 2019

Instrumentation: 3 flutes including piccolo and alto flute, 2 oboes including English horn, 3 clarinets including bass clarinet, 2 bassoons including contrabassoon; 3 horns, 2 trumpets; harp; strings

Estimated duration: 8 minutes

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That's beautiful, thanks! Classic Goldenthal that I've been waiting for after a string of smaller and weirder ensemble pieces in recent years. Kudos to the conductor for holding the end long enough for the piece to sink in (as opposed to annoying audience members who start clapping the second the last note is heard).

 

Crossing fingers and toes for a recording of this.

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This was news to me. Apparently Goldenthal thanked David Shire in the booklet of Alien 3.

 

"I have a lot of admiration for David. David did a score called The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3 and that's a twelve-tone big band score. That's something that's never associated with Mr. Shire, who's many times thought of as a middle-of-the-road type composer, but that work, if you just listen to it on its own, it's a very unsusual score."

 

I wonder if Goldenthal has mentioned Williams in the past and what he has said about him, I can only remember a comment he made about Jaws, nothing else:

 

“It took a director like Spielberg, who really pays attention to music, working with Williams, to remind us of the power of music in a film,” Goldenthal says of “Jaws.” “It is not special effects or sound effects that makes ‘Jaws’ scary, but Williams’ music, just as it was Herrmann’s music in ‘Psycho’ that created all the terror in the shower scene.”

 

A new video of Elliot Goldenthal discussing his score to Alien 3:

 

 

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I often hear "Elliot Goldenthal" and "Polish avant-garde" in the same sentence. I know he takes a lot of inspiration from Kilar and Penderecki in particular (and of course his old mentor Corigliano also uses some of these ideas), but what are some other names/works or even just general techniques which you can hear as his influences?

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Yup, saw it on Facebook. I was not aware of this performance, or the new arrangement of MICHAEL COLLINS (which is unusual, because I tend to know everything that goes on in Goldenthal land). Looking forward to hearing it very much, and hoping it has its own 'identity', so to speak, and that it's not merely material from the score spliced together in a suite. 

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39 minutes ago, Thor said:

 so to speak, and that it's not merely material from the score spliced together in a suite. 

 

I suspect it will end up being this. But, it's a bloody great score, so I probably won't complain much!

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I like it, although it has some THIN RED LINE vibes going on at times. So I'm sure it must have been temped. I've talked to Goldenthal about his Mann collaboration (both in official and unofficial settings), and he said it's always been difficult, but ultimately fruitful.

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5 hours ago, Thor said:

Well, if it's just that, I already have the soundtrack to enjoy. Goldenthal is too good to not let some great ornamental details sneak in.

 

The score is great, but the album is lengthy, and I'm not often in the mood for the full thing. I'll welcome a suite. Somewhat like your obsession with abridged album releases, except that I'll be happy to have both.

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On 3/20/2020 at 1:26 PM, KK said:

Yes!!

 

5DF78CE0-18E1-4969-847C-6305D51DFB84.png

 

On 3/20/2020 at 1:28 PM, Thor said:

and that it's not merely material from the score spliced together in a suite. 

 

So, it ended up being this. Performance/recording is also sometimes a bit shaky, but it's nice to have.

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1 minute ago, Jurassic Shark said:

I object to the use of the term symphony for what's just a suite of cues.

What about Ralph Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" using the adapted music from the film he just scored, "Scott of the Antarctic"?  What about Sergei Prokofiev's Symphony No. 4 based on music from his ballet, Prodigal Son?  What about Prokofiev's Symphony No. 3 lifted from his opera "The Fiery Angel"?  What about his dramatic cantata, Alexander Nevsky which is a suite of music from his film...oh never mind.

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It's on Spotify!

 

https://open.spotify.com/album/3Pzh6FiiBEgo4kQDKdKE5A?si=n0fp0WN1T1O8gbOaDNSEXg

 

6 minutes ago, karelm said:

What about Ralph Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" using the adapted music from the film he just scored, "Scott of the Antarctic"?  What about Sergei Prokofiev's Symphony No. 4 based on music from his ballet, Prodigal Son?  What about Prokofiev's Symphony No. 3 lifted from his opera "The Fiery Angel"?  What about his dramatic cantata, Alexander Nevsky which is a suite of music from his film...oh never mind.

 

It's perfectly okay to take pre-existing material and work it into a symphony.

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12 minutes ago, karelm said:

What about Ralph Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" using the adapted music from the film he just scored, "Scott of the Antarctic"?  What about Sergei Prokofiev's Symphony No. 4 based on music from his ballet, Prodigal Son?  What about Prokofiev's Symphony No. 3 lifted from his opera "The Fiery Angel"?  What about his dramatic cantata, Alexander Nevsky which is a suite of music from his film...oh never mind.

 

But those are mostly cases of taking pre-existing content and adapting/reworking it for the symphonic form. Whereas something like this and the LOTR Symphony is essentially just splicing pre-existing film cues together. The former asks for an active role from the composer, the latter, a passive one.

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3 minutes ago, KK said:

Whereas something like this and the LOTR Symphony is essentially just splicing pre-existing film cues together.

 

Exactly. And then labelling it as a symphony gives wrong ideas about the work.

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2 hours ago, KK said:

But those are mostly cases of taking pre-existing content and adapting/reworking it for the symphonic form. Whereas something like this and the LOTR Symphony is essentially just splicing pre-existing film cues together. The former asks for an active role from the composer, the latter, a passive one.

 

Spot on. I've always been bothered by the title "LOTR Symphony", because that one's about as unsymphonic as you can get.

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3 hours ago, KK said:

 

But those are mostly cases of taking pre-existing content and adapting/reworking it for the symphonic form. Whereas something like this and the LOTR Symphony is essentially just splicing pre-existing film cues together. The former asks for an active role from the composer, the latter, a passive one.

 

It's called a Symphonic fantasy according to his twitter page: "JUNE 2018 Dublin, the live performance of the orchestral fantasy from MICHAEL COLLINS for the first time with ⁦@RTE_NSO , with Mick O’Brien on Uilleann pipes and conducted by ⁦@ernstvantiel⁩" so you should be happy now. 

 
Meanwhile, what's this, we have a new 2020 filmscore from Goldenthal for Julie Taymor's "The Glorias".  Anyone know what to expect from this?

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I suspect The Glorias won't have a ton of score. Maybe something more subdued along the lines of Public Enemies? But it's Goldenthal, so you never really know what to expect...

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On 3/20/2020 at 4:18 PM, Marian Schedenig said:

 

The score is great, but the album is lengthy, and I'm not often in the mood for the full thing. I'll welcome a suite. Somewhat like your obsession with abridged album releases, except that I'll be happy to have both.

My MICHAEL COLLINS* program

1-5

8

10-14

17

18

TT: 32:42

* includes two songs

Fantastic score.

In my top ten for the 90s!

On 4/11/2020 at 8:30 AM, karelm said:

What about Ralph Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 7, "Sinfonia Antarctica" using the adapted music from the film he just scored, "Scott of the Antarctic"?  What about Sergei Prokofiev's Symphony No. 4 based on music from his ballet, Prodigal Son?  What about Prokofiev's Symphony No. 3 lifted from his opera "The Fiery Angel"?  What about his dramatic cantata, Alexander Nevsky which is a suite of music from his film...oh never mind.

I hereby crown you the new

" King of Whataboutery"

😆

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5 hours ago, bruce marshall said:

I hereby crown you the new

" King of Whataboutery"

😆

 

I hereby crown you the new

" King of stupid posts"

😆

6 hours ago, Skelly said:

Classical KUSC will be airing "October Light" again next month on August 16th, 7PM PST.

Can someone please record this?  The excerpt I heard was gorgeous!

14 hours ago, crocodile said:

I remember that concert. :)

 

 

 

Karol

Very fine performances!  I was at the Othello premiere back in 1998 and reviewed it for Film Score Monthly plus attended the rehearsals of Goldenthal's opera, Grendel, which still hasn't been released.

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