Jump to content

John Williams returns to San Diego - January 31, 2018

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 91
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Hi everyone, sorry for not posting this sooner. Work has been a bit crazy today and I’m just now getting some down time to put this write-up together for the sold-out concert. I will say this up front

Thank you for alerting us to this, Paul (and welcome to the forum!).  I saw Richard Kaufman conduct the RSNO in an all-Williams programme in Edinburgh last year and it was fantastic.  Kaufman seems to

More details to come, but the first encore was a BRAND NEW arrangement of Han Solo and the Princess!!!

22 hours ago, Will said:

Wonder if they will premiere the TLJ suite. However, IIRC the TFA suite hadn't been published that early after release. 

In the case of TFA, the score was finished just weeks before release, whereas TLJ has been done for months.  I would assume Williams worked up the concert suite soon afterwards and thus it should/could be ready to go immediately with the film release.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

But you don't bring people halfway around the world to visit Williams. You bring the Williams to them. And San Diego is the perfect setting. People already associate our beautiful city with Williams attractions. The Lost World: Jurassic Park; Sea World; Former San Diego Chargers on NBC Sunday Night Football.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...

Expected Program for this week's San Diego performance:


Hymn to New England

Suite from Far and Away

Out to Sea/The Shark Cage Fugue from Jaws

Suite from E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial (Three Million Light Years from Home; Stargazers; Adventures on Earth)




The Adventures of Mutt from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

A Child's Tale: Suite from The BFG

Three Selections from Harry Potter (The Chamber of Secrets; Nimbus 2000; Harry's Wondrous World)

Theme from Sabrina

Three Selections from Star Wars (The Rebellion is Reborn; Rey's Theme; Main Title)

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, KingPin said:

More details to come, but the first encore was a BRAND NEW arrangement of Han Solo and the Princess!!!





6 minutes ago, KingPin said:

Yes it was brand new. I’m very familiar with the original concert version and this one contained no traces of the original version.


I’ll post my full review of the concert later once I have a full moment to sit at a proper keyboard.



Holy cow!  Please tell me you recorded the show on your phone!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I concur: great write up.  I don't understand the segment of JWfandom that disses the BFG piece.  It is a well-constructed, very satisfying piece of music.  


I really hope this will lead to a publication and recording of the ET suite.  It is the JW symphony that should be programed by pops and Symphony orchestras alike.   

Link to post
Share on other sites

BFG to me is a brilliant score. It honestly stands on it's own. The impressionistic feel to it is lovely and there's so much in there in orchestration. I can understand why people don't gravitate to it as much as say The Post or even Star Wars because it is flighty in a way. Harmonically is also goes all over the place which I love but people seem to prefer easier to listen to pieces these days as I have stated before. With the pop sound of Zimmer and his ilk coming into fashion in the last 10 years or it has dumbed down Epic sounding music to a big degree (IMO although musically it's not my opinion, it's just fact). And don't come at me again for saying something like this, I honestly don't care! I also like easier to listen to pieces sometimes, lol! Take TLJ for instance, the end of The Spark is most people's favorite moment and really it's a simple section where it rests on the tonic and repeats notes ad nauseam. It's a great moment but frankly, it's just "easy listening music".... I Love it but way prefer where Williams is really modulating and flying all over the place and showing off his compositional skills and the orchestra is showing off it's virtuostic playing which there is a lot of in most Star Wars, The BFG and other adventure score that Williams writes.


I would love to hear the new rendition of Han Solo and The Princess. You know. He had stated last year that he wrote a new piece for Princess Leia fas a tribute or the end titles. I can't believe it was just the simple rendition of Leia's Theme on Piano that we heard. That is not writing, that's just the first statement simply played on piano, which was lovely in itself anyway. I wonder if this was what he had originally written and they changed their mind and decided to go with the piano bit. Which would also explain why the end titles don't sound like a completely written out section of music but a collection of cues.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Amazing news! Makes me wonder how much else he has socked away on his desk. 


I wouldn’t be surprised if that “new piece” he referenced was just a casual way of referring to the end credits callout. Johnny’s not exactly a model of precision when discussing the particulars of his catalog entries. 


I do hope the Solo theme is a fresh composition, though. Poe, Rey, and Rose prove that he can still crank out a corker when he’s got something to work with. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, KingPin said:

There were two encores. The first was the new arrangement of Han Solo and the Princess, which was completely unexpected but a pleasant surprise all the same. Although Williams never specifically alluded to it, I couldn’t help wondering whether revisiting this piece had something to do with the upcoming Han Solo standalone film. As stated previously, this piece bears hardly any resemblance to the original concert version. The original version is more horn and woodwind prominent until the piece hits the climax, whereas this new version very much features the strings section throughout. The cellos are given the theme first, and the theme itself has been heavily modified and developed by Williams. The violins work through some thematic variation, and then the woodwinds take over the theme. The piece continues to build to the climax, at which point it leads into the version heard at the end of the end credits of Empire Strikes Back, which I think may be the only time in the piece that the theme is heard in its original unadulterated form. As the climax dies down, it leads into a sweet and delicate solo flute cadenza that was another variation of the melody before coming to a gentle close (again, more flute being featured throughout the evening). I sort of view Williams' approach to this new piece as a combination of the Marion’s Theme concert version and the revised concert version of The Face of Pan: prominently modified from the original concert version, but still with sweeping orchestration that is characteristic of Williams’ current lyrical style. 


Thanks for the description! I very much hope it will be recorded or published soon. I think it's very amusing to see JW taking a 40-years old tune and doing new variations/permutations on it. I guess tinkering with his own creations in the new Star Wars films induced him to sift through his library saying "Let's see if I can do better now" :)


I love the original concert version (especially as recorded by Gerhardt), but the only small quibble I always had about it was that it's shaped and structured a tad too much like the Princess Leia Theme concert version. I guess Williams never performed it as often as his other "love themes" from SW (Princess Leia and Luke & Leia) likely because he felt it wasn't as good as the other two. It's nice to see him returning to an old creation and trying to give it a new spin.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.