Prom 38: Friday 12th August 2011 at 7.00 p.m. (Film Music)
The BBC Concert Orchestra and principal conductor Keith Lockhart are joined by violinist Chloe Hanslip in this concert of music for the silver screen from both sides of the Atlantic.
Celebrating the centenary of his birth there's a tribute to the film composers' composer Bernard Herrmann, alongside music by today's greatest living exponent John Williams. Passages from Henry V accompany William Walton's iconic music, and there's a tribute to the late John Barry with two of his most famous themes. With additional music by Ennio Morricone, Richard Rodney Bennett at 75, and a brand new suite from last year's film Norwegian Wood - music by BBC Concert Orchestra's composer in residence, Jonny Greenwood - this promises to be a spectacular celebration of the best of classic and modern film music.
Music from North by Northwest, Psycho and others. Morricone: Cinema Paradiso theme. Walton, arr Mathieson: Henry V Suite.
John Williams: Music from Star Wars, Schindler's List and Harry Potter
Jonny Greenwood arr. Robert Ziegler: Norwegian Wood - suite (BBC Commission, World Premiere)
Sir Richard Rodney Bennett: Murder on the Orient Express - suite
Barry: Out of Africa - Love Theme
Various: Music from the James Bond films
Chloë Hanslip (violin)
BBC Concert Orchestra
Keith Lockhart (conductor).
I thought I would bump this up as I quite like some film music, certainly not all. Bernard Herrmann always reminds me of some Bruckner scherzos. If that upsets people I'm sorry but I'm sure he heard Bruckner before he wrote the music for North by NorthWest.
I'm not too sure about the remainder tonight.
RRB's Murder on the Orient Express score is not the best choice - imv quite undistinguished after that garrulous tune. The Elegy for Caroline Lamb has much more substance. (It was the only piece of "modern music" my dear old mum could stand ) It stands up on its own - always makes me think of a Capability Brown landscape for some reason - unlike most of the other pieces, possibly excepting the Walton - which probably best personnifies Walton in the public mind.
I guess I come from an old school which felt movie score music could not meaningfully be divorced from context. Apart from Eisler's, naturally...
It's also on BBC4 with a 30 minute delay.
Keith Lockhart certainly is making the BBC Concert Orchestra play well in Bernard Herrmann's Psycho.
I'm watching on BBC4. Quite good musically, but some highly embarrassing interval gushing.
I don't know...even though it's not a great composition, I thought it worked well as a piece of light music. Like all good works in the genre, it was cheerful, fun, and not pretending to be something more than it was. But if you prefer substance in your film music, may I interest you in a little Birtwistle or Pierre Henry?
Originally Posted by Serial_Apologist
Funny you should mention the problem of divorcing film music from its context. As I was listening tonight, I was doing my best not to think of the films as I was listening to each piece--instead, I tried to appreciate each work on its own terms, devoid of extramusical associations. On those grounds, I'd say Bernard Hermann stood head and shoulders above the rest. Even the Walton, though I must say the dramatic reading was very powerful indeed. For some reason, the Walton struck me as feeling a bit dated, while the Hermann scores seemed vital and fresh. I would have liked to hear his Concerto Macabre or Twisted Nerve, too...not enough time, I suppose.
I was left a little cold by the structure and orchestration of the Greenwood piece, but I suppose it isn't fair to expect it to be in any way comparable to the other works on the programme. Keith Lockhart has to be one of the biggest hams in the world, but I thought he was exactly what this concert needed and it was a pleasure to watch him.
Having caught some of this on BBC4, I couldn't help but wonder how this music might have sounded had the John Wilson Orchestra been tackling it.
Whilst I enjoyed some fine playing during the James Bond sequence, it just seemed a bit clipped and precise to me, rather than exuding the smoky, 60s glamour that I associate with those scores.
I feel the JWO might have provided a bit more in that department!
Just a small observation though - it was all good stuff (save for the omission of any of Sir Malcolm Arnold's scores, but that is a discussion for another day...)
I was in the hall thinking the same thing ! I came to the conclusion - JWO would be much better. Not least because they are better band and JW a far better conductor. BBCCO did come a bit unstuck in the John Williams where great precision is required and the Greenwood piece needed to be at start of the second half - shocking piece of inept programming which effectively ruined it before it had started.
Originally Posted by mrbouffant
A very enjoyable concert none the less
It was an enjoyable concert, Greenwood's meanderings excepted (I thought), but I couldn't agree less about John Wilson being "a far better conductor" than Keith Lockhart - Wilson is far better marketed, perhaps, but Lockhart has far more experience of doing this kind of thing and is a seriously good musician. I thought he did a fine and very proficient job and the BBC CO was on generally good form apart from some tired brass playing towards the end.
Originally Posted by amac4165