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Scherzo For Motorcycle and Orchestra (revised)


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I just got back from the Hollywood Bowl, where John Williams was rehearsing with the orchestra. The only real surprise was a new arrangement of "Scherzo for Motorcycle and Orchestra". This must have been an encore piece since it was not listed on the program. It's different than the album recording and the Boston Pops recording. It's now one of those Williams concert works that never seems to end, like "The Forest Battle" or "Parade of the Slave Children". There were other differences in orchestration as well.

I won't be going back for the concert tonight or tomorrow, but maybe some handy YouTuber will.

Neil

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Great! That and "The Map Room" are my favorite Indy cues, so I hope somebody records this! And I love the ending to "The Forest Battle" (and "Parade of Slave Children").

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First "Marion's Theme" and the new version of "Irina's Theme," and now this? Wow. Has Indy IV gotten Williams pumped for this stuff? Interesting...

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First "Marion's Theme" and the new version of "Irina's Theme," and now this? Wow. Has Indy IV gotten Williams pumped for this stuff? Interesting...

Impossible, Indy IV is just an uninspired piece of crap. So i have heard...

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Hmm, according to the review on the main page, this was the program (no "Scherzo."):

John opened with the National Anthem, played gloriously, and then segued immediately into three Olympics pieces: Bugler's Dream/Olympic Fanfare and Theme; A Song for World Peace; and Olympic Spirit, accompanied by clips from Olympic Games from Athens and backward (nothing from Beijing).

Then, he brought out new and old favorites:

Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind (with re-edited films clips)

"Flight to Neverland" from Hook

Three PIeces from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull:

-The Adventures of Mutt

-Irina's Theme (with film clips from dozens of old movies...the theme? - Smoky, myterious and dangerous women of cinema)

-The Raider's March (with Indy scenes throughout)

Intermission

"Hooray for Hollywood"

A Tribute to the Films of Stanley Donen

-"You're all the World to Me" from Royal Wedding (with film)

-"Bless Your Beautiful Hide" from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

-"I Like Myself" from It's Always Fair Weather

-"The Worry Song" from Anchors Aweigh

-"Singin' in the Rain" from Singin' in the Rain

Theme from Sabrina

A Tribute to George Lucas and Steven Spielberg

-Jaws - Star Wars - Raiders of the Lost Ark - E.T. the Extraterrestrial

THREE ENCORES

Imperial March

Marion's Theme

Theme from Superman

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I frankly don't see how JW could improve on the previosu concert arrangement. Does it really work, or is it more of an interesting exercise?

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Hmm, according to the review on the main page, this was the program (no "Scherzo."):

I did indicate that it was not on the program. And Williams has been known to do different encores on different evenings. I haven't seen a review yet of Saturday's concert. Perhaps it was performed there.

I hope I've proven to be a pretty reliable source in the past.

Neil

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My guess is that he wanted to try out his new arrangement with a real orchestra (what a better chance to get your own music played by a world-class orchestra and... for free?). He did the same in the Tanglewood concerts (they rehearsed the scherzo but didn't play it in the concert).

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Is anyone else but me baffled by the crowd reaction to the Star Wars main title in the YouTube video? I think it's really really scary.

Not to mention that I find it rude to other audience members who just want to listen to the music.

This isn't a pop concert, or is it?

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Is anyone else but me baffled by the crowd reaction to the Star Wars main title in the YouTube video? I think it's really really scary.

Not to mention that I find it rude to other audience members who just want to listen to the music.

This isn't a pop concert, or is it?

That's the general reaction to the theme when he plays it at the Bowl. The gift shop even sells toy lightsabers. I'm reminded of Triumph the Insult Comic Dogs line about it looking like "a nerd circle jerk".

Neil

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That much is certain.

Oh, and by the way, the way the Jaws motif leads into the Star Wars main title is spectacular!

I can say that one of the greatest concert experiences of my life was the first time that, as an encore, he just busted out the Main Title from Star Wars, the crowd exploded, then shut up, and it wasn't part of a medley but was performed exactly as it was on the original soundtrack release. The whole freakin' kitchen sink.

I also remember it because, no joke, at about the same time that the Star Destroyer would've crawled overhead in the film, some numbskull in an airplane flew overhead, close enough to be heard on my crappy bootleg later!

This year was the first concert in quite a while that I missed. Just not into Hollywood musicals.

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Hi everybody !

First of all, excuse me for my bad english !

I just want to say that I've got the new arrangement of cherzo For Motorcycle and Orchestra in mp3 on my computer !

In fact, It isn't a new arrangement, because this arrangement what recorded in 1999. Time : 2.50 min

The original soundtrack is 3.53 minutes long...

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I don't recall the times, but if it was recorded in 1999, I assume it is the arrangement already released on the Spielberg compilation, as well as The JW:Greatest Hits 1969-1999.

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yes. I assume it's different from the 1999 re-recorded one.

As far as the new Marion's Theme is concerned,is it possible it was a 1981 arrangement that was never recorded?

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What is the 1999 recording? Orchestra/conductor?

As far as the new Marion's Theme is concerned,is it possible it was a 1981 arrangement that was never recorded?

No, I remember they said in the broadcast it was an entirely new arrangement.

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He doesn't do such things (I'm sure he's not even aware of the existence of something like iTunes), the publishers/distributors do.

well wasn't this Geisha stuff (Playing live at Jay Leno, Itunes etc.) just a big load of Johnny Williams Academy Award Advertisment??

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He doesn't do such things (I'm sure he's not even aware of the existence of something like iTunes), the publishers/distributors do.

well wasn't this Geisha stuff (Playing live at Jay Leno, Itunes etc.) just a big load of Johnny Williams Academy Award Advertisment??

And yet Yo-Yo Ma got the bulk of the credit on Leno (and was probably the reason why it ended up on iTunes).

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In fact, It isn't a new arrangement, because this arrangement what recorded in 1999. Time : 2.50 min

That recording is from the 1991 album "The Spielberg/Williams Collaboration". This new arrangement runs longer than that recording.

Neil

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I would not speculate on a new Indiana Jones recording by Williams. I rather think of the Scherzo as a new title in the Hal Leonard Signature Series. It might be that John did a few changes and wanted to hear them. He listened to his changes at Tanglewood, maybe redid some of them and listened to them again at the Hollywood Bowl.

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It might be that John did a few changes and wanted to hear them. He listened to his changes at Tanglewood, maybe redid some of them and listened to them again at the Hollywood Bowl.

Well, if that's all he wanted to do, he wouldn't have had to actually perform them during the concerts. One or two run-throughs at the rehearsal would have been enough.

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  • 13 years later...

If anybody has not heard the revised version of the concert arrangement, here it is!

 

 

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1 hour ago, Jay said:

If anybody has not heard the revised version of the concert arrangement, here it is!

 

 

I heard it in Berlin, I think. But is that version any different from the one on the Boston Pops Spielberg collaboration album?

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Yes, it is - that's why this thread was created

 

On 29/08/2008 at 7:22 PM, Lurker said:

It's different than the album recording and the Boston Pops recording.

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I'm still not sure about the rearrangement (it basically takes a straightforward piece and clutters it up with all kinds of inserts), but I did at least like it much better in Berlin than on the Dudamel album.

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I loved it at Tanglewood this summer

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Here is a video version (FSO)as well.  I am not sold on the revisions either.  However, it think they are lateral; they make the piece neither worse nor better.

 

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Oh nice, I forgot they did a version of it too!

 

Yea I still kind like the film cue more than either concert arrangement, but honestly all 3 are a lot of fun.  And at a live concert, it's always super fun!

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It still feels like the same piece. (That's good.) I hear the original melodies right away. There are additional flourishes and a more defined intro and ending. It's not like Han Solo and the Princess where I spend a lot of the piece thinking "What am I listening to? You're playing it wrong!"

 

BTW, this is driving me crazy: Was there not a concert arrangement of this on the original CD? Or am I just thinking of the end credits? I honestly haven't listened to the original in a lot of years. But for some reason I remember thinking that this piece of music was essentially on the album three times. Film version (with a small blast of the Raiders March), concert version, end credits suite. Maybe the memory, she plays the tricks?

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It is not on the score album 3 times. 

 

At the recording sessions of the film, they only recorded the film cue. The concert version premiered in concert halls, but we got a nice recording fairly quickly via the first Williams/Spielberg collaboration album in 1991.

 

And I think the end credits just tracks in the same recording of the film cue? I honestly don't recall right now. 

 

But that's all that's on the score album. The film cue, and the end credits.   Maybe you burned a CDR with the Spielberg/Williams track added to it or something. 

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I was wondering if I might have been thinking of something like William/Spielberg. This is one of those tracks (like The Asteroid Field or Ben's Death and TIE Fighter Attack) where the film cue is so perfect and concise that no concert version is necessary (to me).

 

Can you imagine having the audio tech like CDRs that we just take for granted in 1989? ;)

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Every time the discussion about one of these revised pieces ramps up, I wish for some highly musically literate person to create an infographic that lays out and color-codes the different sections of each piece by theme, instrument group, etc. I’m not capable of doing it myself, but if I were a 17th-century Prussian duke, this would totally be one of the targets of my aristocratic patronage.  

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