Discussion in 'Star Wars: Episode VII and Beyond (Archive)' started by -polymath-, Oct 31, 2012.
The scores for the PT are not 'lesser works'
They should go with Williams until he dies!
THIS would fit, so godddamn well.
If Williams won't do it, raise Gustav Holst from the dead.
This. And the next in line will do his damndest to keep it as close to what has already been done.
I really hope JW can still do these new scores. He is just the best and an essential part of Star Wars in my opinion. There is no one else around that comes up with such great themes and variations of them. The music of ROTS is some of the best stuff he has ever composed so he still has the magic.
If they do make some spin off movies it would be good to let some other composers have a crack at them and bring in something fresh, but I really hope JW can carry on with 7,8 & 9.
I don't know who stated that they were, but they couldn't be more wrong. Duel of the Fates if perhaps the most EPIC piece of music ever written for anything . . . EVER!
Bach, Brahms, Beethoven, Motzart wish they could've written Duel.
My thoughts exactly. He's as much a part of SW as George, in my book.
I beg to differ.
Bach practically invented modern music with his Well-Tempered Clavier and his Mass in B Minor is allegedly the greatest piece ever written for a choir, with sometimes as much as eight voices singing together on top of the orchestra.
Brahms was one of the pioneers in integrating folk melodies in his music and a master of the counterpoint, while always extending a hand to help his friends (chief among them Dvorak, who wouldn't have been able to compose some of his own works if not for Brahm's largesse).
Beethoven laid the foundations of the Romantic genre and his Ninth Symphony (composed when he was almost deaf and couldn't hear what it sounded like except in his head) is one of the most revered pieces of music of all time. Its Ode To Joy final chorus is so powerful that the European Union chose it as anthem, even as the Nazi gave them every reason to hate anything German after World War Two.
Mozart's The Magic Flute, which is, if I'm not mistaken, the first opera to be written in German, contains one of the most difficult coloratura arias ever written (The Air of the Queen of the Night), still a milestone bravura piece for many singers to this day.
Is John Williams great, even wonderful, and did he write some very fine themes? Yes, certainly. But to compare favourably his contributions to music with those of the great masters is to prove oneself to be woefully ignorant of their own significance in the history of music.
Just a note: Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Abduction from the Seraglio) was Mozart's first German opera. He's got two of them. The Don Giovanni created by Lorenzo da Ponte and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (they even had da Ponte's pal, Giacomo Casanova, himself, putting his input into the work) is arguably the first Byronic hero (a kind of anti-hero) of opera. And rather than it being opera seria (serious opera) or opera buffa (funny opera), it's a dramma giocoso (jocular drama--which is opera buffa with the inclusion of tragic, dramatic content). Die Zauberflöte is basically a fairy tale with Prince Tamino rescuing Princess Pamina with his wacky sidekick, Papageno (you've even got a family plot twist with the Queen of the Night, Pamina's mother, turning out to be the villain). Wagner's operas were famous for being big fantastical, mythological sagas. There were also a lot of melodramme in the 19th century.
John Williams and other masters of 20th and 21st century film music scores are very much are how Classical music has lived on, though. John Williams is very Neo-Romantic, himself. Without films and increasingly filmic television, orchestral music would be nearly dead. And John Williams certainly has to be applauded for bringing attention to its power after the late '60s and early '70s (when everyone was trying to be gritty, avant-garde, 'realistic' and minimalist--Star Wars is absolutely what brought us the '80s film renaissance) were moving away from bombastic, timeless orchestrations. It was actually a move back to the feel of early/old Hollywood.
While opera died as a popular art form in the late '30s (you can still find Hollywood movies using operatic singers in the '30s/early '40s--see baritone Douglas McPhail in Babes in Arms/Little Nellie Kelly, tenor Felix Knight in March of the Wooden Soldiers and Snow White's Adriana Caselotti with her coloratura soubrette voice), orchestral music that would have felt right at home in the 19th century continued with the likes of John Williams and those he influenced. Of course, there was folk music which was roughly analogous to our popular forms of music back in these times, too, living right alongside opera and symphonies. Film scores are a bit like the way a composer used to compose for an opera: they're trying to help tell a dramatic story, written to the words of a libretto (operatic equivalent of a screenplay), with music. Concepts like character-based leitmotifs date back to historical opera techniques.
I totally agree with this statement. In my previous post, I was attempting to explain briefly (and thus perhaps with not enough detail or nuances) that the one reason John Williams was able to compose Duel of the Fates was because of all the groundbreaking work done before him. A giant himself he may be, but he also stands on the shoulders of other giants, so to speak, and the way the other person belittled their work made my hackles rise. And of course they couldn't have written Duel of the Fates, seeing as the musical innovations needed to make the writing of such a piece possible hadn't taken place yet... In fact, they were busy making these innovations themselves. Just because they wrote their music at another time, with other constraints and expectations, doesn't mean their work is necessarily "inferior". Progress isn't a straight line, but rather a set of interconnected spirals.
I think it's time a SW movie had this in it:
Basically, Star Wars' music, no matter who composes it, will have to follow the form in which John Williams composes:
And certain leitmotivs will have to find their way back into each subsequent score when they are called for by the dramatic content (see Wagner and the decade-plus timetable it took him to complete the four massive operas of Der Ring des Nibelungen with the same leitmotivs developing and being quoted from previous sections of the saga). It's interesting that leitmotif as we know it really started with Wagner (despite motifs predating him in symphonies and sonatas going back to the Classical period), but really gained steam following him and now being a huge element of the form of modern film composing.
One thing that's amusing in the Classical world sort of running into Star Wars is in Amadeus (comically enough, Mark Hamill even did the American stage version after Simon Callow did the first U.K. production and later ended up in the Schikaneder role for the film beside Tom Hulce--talk about getting typecast in roles with daddy issues!). You basically have il Commendatore/Leopold ending up with a Darth Vader/Imperial March correlation (the film's Janus masquerade mask/Commendatore even looks like a bit like Vader) using those famous notes found in Don Giovanni's overture and then in Don Giovanni, a cenar teco m'invitasti! It essentially turned this into a leitmotif using music that already evokes heavy imagery of a certain character, even if it wasn't quite a leitmotif before (a time before leitmotifs were actually used). Certain music pieces that weren't actually leitmotifs (as they don't reoccur--though you do find some of these 'greatest hits' getting quoted in overtures--though the overture of Don Giovanni with the only other occurrence of the Commendatore 'theme' does happen to lead into the only scene where Don Pedro/il Commendatore features before he becomes a ghostly statue--it's the death of the character in a duel) do essentially become so closely connected to a certain character or element, that they kind of do end up the 'theme' of that character.
Let's face it... If you think of Valkyries, isn't what comes to mind a rather specific set of notes? Likewise, John Williams' character themes tend to evoke exactly one character, set of characters, plot element or the situation for which they were composed. To this day, the notes from Jaws mean SHARK ATTACK!, the shrill violin E-string can only mean getting stabbed to death in the shower, etc... Though admittedly, La donna è mobile makes people think more of pizza than Rigoletto these days...
Basically, take from Williams' scores whatever themes are needed, invent at will in the same vein where necessary, and run with it like Hans Zimmer did with his Gladiator soundtrack:
They will. Or at least until Williams is physically unable or unwilling to do so.
"I wouldn't have anyone else do it."
-George Lucas, referring to John Williams scoring Star Wars
Shame that Lucas isn't doing any more Star Wars films then...
If not Williams then who?
John Ottman or Michael Giacchino.
They are the only two that spring to mind as maybe being able to continue in the style of Williams.
Oh please let Williams do at least ep 7 and set up a new composer with some themes. Put Williams in a bacta tank ASAP and only let him out to compose and conduct before putting him back in the bacta.
The score is VERY important, I hope it is Williams, or at least some of his famous themes still used. A great musical score does not in itself make a great film but without one, it is hard to be average at best. My favorite films usually happen to have my favorite scores - Braveheart, Last of the Mohicans, Lord of the Rings....
I would prefer John Williams to anyone, but if he doesn't do it I like the idea of Michael Giacchino.
Definitely not lesser to any degree. Duel of the Fates, Battle of Heroes, Quigon funeral/Vaders surgery music are all classics.
He is not willing to do it, its a new trilogy under Disney hire a new talent & let him shine.
Michael Giacchino was great for LOST. Many of his themes were quite epic.
Is he a young guy? Will he be around for years? If so get him & let the old folks enjoy the rest of their days, they deserved rest & a break.
Why do you care whether Williams has a nice retirement or not? He isn't retiring right now and hasn't indicated any desire to, or a lack of interest in continuing to work. Artists are artists and they either create or they die, so please quit defending his need to go out to pasture when he doesn't need defending in that way.
Anyone else recently get to watch Lincoln? Williams sure as hell still has it.