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New Project: John Williams Potter Scoring


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Hi all! We are very excited to present a composition project that has been a long time in the making. We have created the Potter Scoring Project, where we constructed a score for Harry Potter and the

Mr. Bellamy has entered the chat.     

Update - Our next set of cues is posted! Check out "Diggorys and Portkeys" and "The Quidditch World Cup."  You can also subscribe to weekly emails for the new cues. We'd love to discuss and hear wh

  • 3 weeks later...

"Hapee Birthdae" Harry! For this week, here are some custom cover art designs using the book covers that can be used for all of the Potter soundtrack albums. As a bonus, we included a Ravendor Goblet of Fire cover with another Mary Grandpre image. We purposely didn't specify original soundtrack or expanded edition, so if you use them they can be for either.

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Very nice! These are the covers I grew up with and you did a great job framing them in the square format.

Oh, and you even followed the LLL's frames for the first three but went different for the rest! That's attention to detail not all ambitious custom cover designers have.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

Great first cue! I’m so excited to see what you guys have planned for order of the Phoenix. From your preface, I think you’re completely right to address the scoring of this film as an emotional continuation of many of the family related, Sirius Black themes established in POA.

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Great stuff @Ravendor Studios 

 

Again, the emotional reaction is far better in this approach. I didn't expect Wand of the Phoenix for the WB Logo, but it really works quite well and gives this film a very different feel to the opening. I really didn't expect for the Dementor material to actually make me feel something, but it felt so nice to hear that against picture while we're seeing the dementors again.

 

Excellent little cues with the Dursleys too. Nice to hear their little theme come back.

 

I feel like, personally, Double Trouble doesn't feel right with the Mrs. Figg cue, but I like the more subtle rendition during the Expulsion cue. Could I ask why Double Trouble is coming back so much? I don't necessarily mind it, but I think I may be missing why you're using it. In Azkaban, from my interpretation, it's far more of a Hogwarts related thing. I feel like it very much represented everyday at Hogwarts. So it makes a bit of sense in the Expulsion cue in a more uncertain state I suppose. Just curious!

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Thanks for your comment, @TSMefford! And thanks for asking about the use of Double Trouble. We wanted to acknowledge how Cuaron describes Double Trouble's introduction into the third film, as a close cousin of Hedwig's Theme that was used for a new/additional musical identity of the Wizarding World. In wanting to relate this score to the aesthetics of POA, we felt it appropriate to use the former here instead of the latter. Regarding the Hogwarts association, this is the first news Harry has heard from the Wizarding World all summer, so these two cues were a good opportunity to hint at that (before the film takes a diversion, of course).

 

We're glad to hear both of you are liking it so far! It's been a lot of fun for us too.

MS & BP

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2 hours ago, Ravendor Studios said:

Thanks for your comment, @TSMefford! And thanks for asking about the use of Double Trouble. We wanted to acknowledge how Cuaron describes Double Trouble's introduction into the third film, as a close cousin of Hedwig's Theme that was used for a new/additional musical identity of the Wizarding World. In wanting to relate this score to the aesthetics of POA, we felt it appropriate to use the former here instead of the latter. Regarding the Hogwarts association, this is the first news Harry has heard from the Wizarding World all summer, so these two cues were a good opportunity to hint at that (before the film takes a diversion, of course).

 

Fair enough. I can certainly buy into that. Again, I did like the more subtle one during the Expulsion cue. As always, looking forward to more!

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These have been fantastic so far, I was particularly impressed with the scoring choices for Harry remembering Cedric’s Death, that treatment of the Voldemort theme gave me actual chills!

 

So glad you guys were able to up the production value with the orchestral samples, much easier to be immersed in the alternate reality you’re presenting, and everything sounds a lot richer and fuller

 

You guys only just finished a whole movie and you’re already partway through the next! Impressive work ethic

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@DarthDementous Thank you so much for listening this whole time! And thank you for commenting! The samples have really helped in expanding on the orchestral sounds available to us. We're enjoying using them, so we're happy to see you are too! I'm so glad you've liked the Voldemort material in this movie. It's been a total fanboy moment for me to be able to use them post-Mort returning.

BP

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On 11/21/2020 at 9:27 AM, DarthDementous said:

I've been particularly enjoying the way you score the more horror-themed scenes, look forward to hearing more!

Thanks a bunch @DarthDementous! Those are particularly fun parts for us to do, so we're so glad you enjoy them as much as us. There are plenty more on the way too. :) 

Today, we get the first look at Umbridge taking over Hogwarts. We hope you all enjoy Cues No. 16 and 17: The First Educational Decree and Sacking Trelawney!

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Hi everyone! This week we've got a cue that wraps together themes and material from all four of the previous scores, and mixes them all together. It's so great at this point in the story to see the unification of all that's come before. It's beginning to point towards the ending and showdown with Voldemort at the Ministry. Here's Cue No. 18: Conversation with Sirius!

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@Ravendor Studios Sorry for the lack of responses, especially from me for this go around. I'm still interested! Just been quite busy. 

 

I'll do some catching up now!

 

EDIT: Finally caught up!

 

I like Hooper's work in Half-Blood Prince, but I have never been a huge fan of his Order of the Phoenix work so this continues to be a huge step up for me. Though I do absolutely love the "Fireworks" cue, so I apologize if I don't end up warming up to your eventual version. 

 

I will compliment you again on adding far more emotional weight to these scenes. While perhaps some statements may be too brief or cut off a tad earlier than I would like personally, I think that familiar thematic material is so undervalued in today's film scores and the rest of the Potter series.

 

You see it done decently in things like Giacchino's "Star Trek" scores and Powell's Dragons trilogy to name some off the top of my head. But something like the Marvel Cinematic Universe should have and could have been bursting with colorful musical themes, motifs, etc that recur throughout the series of films, making them feel even more connected and aware of one another. Instead, for some iconic characters, I couldn't tell you what their themes are. I know Captain America has a pretty consistent one and I know the Avengers theme, but I couldn't tell you what Iron Man's theme is, what Thors theme is, etc. It's one thing to give composers the ability to bring their own talent to a film, but I think it was a mistake to sometimes completely ignore one another's work. When you have that language it can add so much more weight to scenes and would've paid off beautifully in the final two Avengers film. But my point has been made.

 

All that to say that when we have reprises from Williams' first three entries, done in fresh ways and used well, it hits you and it means something. Some examples that I love:

  • The Chamber Theme in "Conversation with Sirius", gorgeous usage and reprise. The music really shines during that transition, whereas I can't even recall what played their before.

  • Window to the Past I thought played beautifully over the scene with Luna and Harry feeding the thestrals.

  • I love Fawkes Theme being arranged a bit differently to represent Dumbledore, I especially love how it plays during the hearing, a far more fitting cue for his entrance into the film.

Just to name a few. 

 

I will add another critique if you don't mind. I found Umbridge's Theme far too sinister in her first speech. I think it gives away her intentions a bit too quickly. I like what you've done with it in the opening of the Classroom cue. You begin with a disguised version and I think that works great. I would've preferred hiding the sinister version like that until that scene. I think it would've made it more impactful. Thoughts on that?

 

Overall, well done! I look forward to more!

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3 minutes ago, TSMefford said:

 

I figured he had one, but my main issue more than anything...does he have the SAME theme across all of films he appears in?

His theme did get reused in the third film, but only once, and did essentially get replaced in it, so yeah, like I said, I do agree that the continuity is very off.

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6 minutes ago, Spider-Fal said:

His theme did get reused in the third film, but only once, and did essentially get replaced in it, so yeah, like I said, I do agree that the continuity is very off.

 

So unfortunate. Yeah, it's a huge missed opportunity not having such a strong sense of musical continuity. Potter suffers the same thing after film 3.

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Thank you @TSMefford! We really appreciate it! We were also particularly looking forward to OOTP as book fans, wanting to lean into the emotional growth of this chapter. Also, this movie has a huge finale as you know that will hopefully make up for some of the more brief thematic statements in the beginning! We're definitely on the same page as you about payoff of thematic materials, especially those big overarching journeys. They just have amazing possibilities for continuity and musical effectiveness.

Anyways, thank you again for pointing out the exact moments so far that we were most excited about! It's really, really great to know that they're landing emotional impact. That is absolutely a fair comment about the Umbridge speech. We saw it as a continuation of the ministry/hearing appearance, but you're right that she doesn't really reveal herself until the classroom.

Thanks for all your feedback!
MS

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Hey everyone! As the Hogwarts students go on Christmas break, so will we - enjoy the last three cues of 2020!
 

Cue No. 22: By the Fire & Cue No. 23: Third Vision and Saving Mr. Weasley
Cue No. 24: Occlumency and Christmas Break
 

We'll see you all on January 10th for a new term at Hogwarts and the remainder of the Order of the Phoenix re-score.
 

Happy Christmas JWFAN!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Wow, so glad I saw this thread today! I've always wanted to see an extensive project like this, and I love the ideas so far!

 

@Ravendor StudiosI quite enjoyed your rescore of the Goblet of Fire ending, so I'd be very curious on your thoughts on my alternate take on it.

 

Here, I included Patrick Doyle's Harry / Heroic theme, while still including William's original themes and orchestration style. I originally thought to have the more quiet version of "Leaving Hogwarts" for this scene like you did, but I felt it might be more impactful if this ending was the last time until Deathly Hallows Part 2 that it was used triumphantly. Like the last bit of care-free happiness that the students of Hogwarts feel before the ministry confirms Voldemort's return. 

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I'm sorry I'm completely behind on listening to your work.
I see you finished GoF (CONGRATULATIONS!!!) and are onto OotP now.

Awesome!!

 

Looking at your website, one thing I'd be interested in is a write-up to go with your GoF album assembly.

Similar to the ones for your individual tracks.

I'm always interested to read the creative background of artistic work like yours. :D

 

Also, you might be interested to have a look at the comments here on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8FQcuENRhJw&lc=UgykhgemoECoEO5VEn54AaABAg

I've been kind-of advertising you there. ;)

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Hi @superultramegaa,
 

Thanks for commenting! We're so glad to hear you've enjoyed our project. 

This is a nice alternate you've done, and it's great to hear other people's interpretations of the ending. We created our score utilizing only John Williams' material, so it was cool to see how one of Patrick Doyle's themes could have been integrated with JW's. It is interesting to see the triumphant ending idea too. We scored ours the way we did because in the pacing of our final cue, it emotionally worked better to end quietly. It's a true testament to John Williams' themes that they could lend themselves so well to either interpretation!


@Pieter Boelen, great to hear from you, thanks for your comments!! We do actually have a digital booklet to go with the Goblet of Fire score! It combines the program notes for each cue and has an additional page about the background for the project. It's on the "GOF Complete Score Presentation" page, or here's the link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mSZbZBWbJ_PUiBKdB4AMxsVtfrJVmjjV/view 

Thanks for talking us up on youtube! It means the world to us that someone would promote the project so enthusiastically. :) 

MS & BP

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18 hours ago, Ravendor Studios said:

We do actually have a digital booklet to go with the Goblet of Fire score! It combines the program notes for each cue and has an additional page about the background for the project. It's on the "GOF Complete Score Presentation" page, or here's the link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1mSZbZBWbJ_PUiBKdB4AMxsVtfrJVmjjV/view 

Wow; hadn't seen that yet!

Beautifully done. You really put your heart and soul into this work; I can tell.

 

The only extra thing then you might consider is some sort of explanation of what you changed in the "album assembly" compared to the complete score.

I reckon that'd be quite fascinating to read too. :D

 

 

18 hours ago, Ravendor Studios said:

Thanks for talking us up on youtube! It means the world to us that someone would promote the project so enthusiastically. :) 


You're quite welcome.

It's not like you don't deserve it. ;)

 

Really wished one day this music could be performed by a proper, full orchestra; and really do it justice.

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