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MUSIC 2F03 Final: Music Final Exam

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Simon Wood

Music 2F03 Final Exam Notes Lecture 1 • studying films that are meant for a western culture • directors want to get their idea across as effectively and efficiently as possible • no right answer when dealing with interpretation, you are free to interpret however you want Apollo 13 • 1995 • composer o James Horner • shower scene • small, intimate scene • music would risk over dramatization • leave space for what follows • after this scene, music continue for several minutes through the launch scene • where music “isn’t” can be as important as where it is • music fades in under shower scene • instruments: o brass ▪ military, heroism and sacrifice • style: o chorale o protestant hymn, faith, sacrifice • tempo: o slow o restrained, controlled, professional o change in musical texture with the transition to external scene What is a movie? • narrative • tells a story • “suspension of disbelief” • film conventions attempt to minimize anything that threatens “suspension of disbelief • except for the use of music The Four Functions • music can create a more convincing atmosphere of time and place o historical, cultural , geographical — BUT based on western conventions • music can underline or create psychological refinements o the unspoken thoughts of a character of the unseen implications of a situation • music can provide a sense of continuity in a film o structure of music “smoothes over” the discontinuous, chaotic nature of a film • music can provide the under pinning for the theatrical build up of a scene then round it up with a sense of finality o music can affect the “pacing” of a scene • examples: • raiders of the lost ark • john williams Lecture 2 Evaluating a Score: • How do we talk about what we hear? • Key Terms and Concepts: • Diegesis: (Die-A-geesis) o The world of the narrative. All characters, events, etc. depicted, suggested, or described o The world of the film – not just what you see but everything implied by that world (a whole other universe – this universe may be our universe) o Important rule – you can have whatever rules you want controlling your universe but it needs to be consistent • Diegetic Music o Any music that emanates from the world of the film – not only music you can hear but the characters in the film can hear – can be radio, band in bar/ singing in shower o Music whose source is within the Diegesis o Heard both by the characters within the narrative and the film audience o Also known as “source music,” “direct music,” or “foreground music” o Functions include: establishing time and place, creating a sense of “realism and immediacy” offering ironic comment • Time/ place – radio you can tell when the movie took place/ culture • Can be used in clever/ ironic way • Nondiegetic Music o Heard by the film audience only o Referred to as the “score.” “underscore,” or “background music,” “Soundtrack” - o Normally originally composed for the specific film (original score) o Music that is originally composed to accompany the specific film – Score o Soundtrack – collection of popular songs that are used within the film (can be contemporary pop songs) o Some films may include music that existed before the film was made – but the decision is made to use that music as score – because the music will rarely line up with exactly how the scenes play – they adapt the music to fit the film – an adapted score (good adaption = hard to tell the difference b/w original) • I.e. The Sting (1973) Music- Scott Joplin, adapted by Marvin Hamlisch o May also include preexisting music used without adaption, i.e. Platoon (1986) Composer: George Deleure, also includes Samuel Barbers Adagio for Strings (1938) Also used in The Elephant Man (1980) and Sicko (2007) o Majority of the score is originally composed o All preexisting music, “compiled score” Example: 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), Compiled from the works of R. Strauss, J Strauss, etc… • This use of music is debated – is it the best or worst way to use music in film • Describing the Music: • Style: o What type of music has the composer chosen? o What type of instruments? o How do these choices relate to the film as a whole? o Example: • Restoration (1995) o Composer: James Newton Howard o Set in mid 1600s o Score is part original part adapted, based on the work of Henry Purcell, an important composed of the period o Used of period instruments including Harpsichord o There’s a sense of control about this music – makes sense of historical relevance to the film – and also in Victorian era control of behavior was very important – play on that • Local Hero (1983) o Composer: Mark Knopfler (Band Dire Strings) o Plot follows an urban American in a small Scottish village o Blend of folk and popular styles o Emphasis on instruments such as the guitar o Knopfler developed melodies similar to Anglo Celtic folk music • The Godfather (1972) o Composer: Nino Rota o Follows the life of an organized crime family o Much of the instrumentation and melodies based on the folk music of Sicily o Brass Instruments – Sacrifice – played in a mournful sound – one trumpet – a man that is utterly alone o Small set of instruments – based on folk ensembles from Sicily – small reinforce idea of family o Waltz style – metaphorical dance in movie with life/ death o Opening scene – daughters wedding (family) • Conceptual Approaches: o Most film music will fall somewhere between two extremes: • (More of a scale, music can go from one end to the other) • Playing the Drama o Music Attempts to reinforce primarily emotional elements within the narrative • Hitting The Action o Music accents visual events o Common approach to cartoon scoring o “Mickey Mousing” – not a good thing – they’ve gone too far o Music that is driven by whatever is going on physically in a moment Musical Characteristics • Melody or Theme o Considered the most “recognizable” music element for western ears o German Opera composer Richard Wagner – Leitmotive • Means more than just theme/ melody – create a M/T associate it with something then put the theme through various scenes (star wars) o Melody –main set of notes you think about when you think of a piece of music • The composer uses these melodies throughout the film to guide it o Goes back to ancient Greek theatre – the Greeks loved music – music and theatre was one thing o Melodies can be taken through a number of variations to tell you what is going on within a particular character – thoughts of feelings etc… o Are the melodies easy to hum, or are they “angular” and more difficult? o Humability Factor – the easier the melody is to hum or sing along chances are good the more sympathetic you are supposed to be towards that character/ scene (Indiana Jones) • Where is challenging themes are towards “evil” characters – (i.e. Jaws hummable but awkward and estranged o Example: Star Wars (1977) Composer: John Williams Tempo or Pulse • How does the speed of the music influence the “tempo” of the narrative? • On-screen action, framing, editing, sound design • Example: The Return of the King (2004) Composer: Howard Shore o Starts with source music but it almost becomes Non-Diegetic o Hear some things not all (Horses/ Sword) don’t hear voice of “FIRE” o The music builds and then pulls out at the point where arrows are shot o Entire thing was serendipitous of having the song sung Harmony • The set of notes that the other instruments are playing while one or a couple instruments are playing the main melody • Singing melody and guitar playing considered the harmony (rarely is it just one instrument for harmony – the “accompaniment”) • Harmony can be just as effective of creating the mood as melody • The doe-a-deer factor for harmony – (song based on the major scale) • The overwhelming majority of music in western culture is based on this set of notes – these is nothing of significance of the major scale – a set of notes that people of western culture have gradually chosen over the years • If you hear harmony based on the major scale tendency to find it familiar and comforting – Consonant or Tonal • The major scale was a cultural choice – several dozen scales • The further you get away from the major scale the more unfamiliar the sound becomes – becomes chaotic almost threatening becoming increasingly dissonant or atonal o Difficult to describe without musical training o Chaotic or orderly? Consonant or dissonant? What do these suggest about events in the Diegesis? o Examples: • Highly Consonant: Main Theme from Cider House Rules (1999) Composer: Rachael Portman • A-list female film composers are rare • Blend of Consonant and Dissonant: Yes from Meet Joe Black (1998) o Composer: Thomas Newman • Difficult to predict where the music is going – unexpected direction – creates more of a sense of expectation / anticipation • The notes have moments where they are unexpected • Because we are so far away from the major scale – constantly being “assaulted” by a new set of notes that are unexpected • Dissonant: Bishops Countdown from Aliens (1986) o Composer: James Horner • Any action adventure film at this time used this in trailers Technical Details; How its Done: • Basic Timetable of Film Production • Preproduction (preparation phase – producers (people who organize the business side of making a film – the director can focus on how the film is going to look without dealing with the other things) o Preparation phase o Script writing and editing o Financial backing o Hiring of director, casting actors o Locating scouting o Various aspects of production design (costume and set design, etc) undertaken o Storyboarding, Pre-Visualization (Pre-vis) • Essentially a comic book version of a film, these days through computer • Good way to try out big ideas (planes flying into scene) • Production o Finalization of script and production design o Principle Photography • Post Production o Assembling and editing the “takes” o Completion and addition of visual and audio effect o Composition and addition of music o Normally, an original film score is one of the final elements to be created and added to the film o Historically, schedule for the composition and recording of a score: 5 to 8 weeks on average. Although often still the case, effects- driven films often have lower post-production periods Lecture 3 Composer’s involvement varies based on working style and specifics of a given project Hiring • freelance or studio contract • collaborative partnerships (spielberg/williams, nolan/zimmer) Scripts • can give composers a “head-start" • research for ethnic or historical influences • Hans Zimmer, The Last Samuri, 2003 • production of important source music is done at this point • in general, composing the score cannot be done on the basis of a script — why? • scripts can change significantly • only words, no clear timing or pace for the composer to work with Screenings • several different opportunities to see the film • rushes: film shot that day • assembly cut: significantly longer than finished film • rough cut: closer to finished film but still undergoing significant editing • fine or locked cut: most if not all editing completed • most composers begin serious work at the fine cut phase — why? • concern that repeated viewing will alter the composers reaction • timing of scenes Temp Tracks • “temporary” music added to film while still in production or early editing • gives more “finished” feeling to work in progress • often take from other film scores, or “classical” music • composers are deeply divided on their view of temp tracks — why? • offers insight into directors thinking process • but can influence the composers initial response • directors familiarity with them track can be an absolute Spotting Session and Cue Sheets • director, composer, music editor/music supervisor • discussion on placement of "cues" • timings, approach, etc….. • music editor then prepares “spotting notes” or cue sheet Composing • 5 to 8 weeks until “delivery” of finished score • short timeline due to fixed release date • frequently exacerbated by production phase running overtime • Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) Composer: Michael Kamen; 2 hours, 11 min of music / produced in 3 1/2 weeks Orchestrators • skilled in composition, music theory, and knowledge of the orchestra • synth demonstrations • copyist produces final parts for musicians • music librarians organize parts for recording sessions • conductors and studio musicians (good sight readers) • recording sessions • synchronization o punch and streamers / click tracks / SMPTE o punch and streamers give visual cues to keep tempo • mixing The Silent Era • 1895-1927 • the persistence of vision • if you show someone related images at a high speed, the brain will stop seeing images and will see it as motion • early developments • The Zoopraxiscope ◦ 1879 ◦ project several images to present the illusion of movement Thomas Edison • The Kinetoscope ◦ 1891 ◦ peephole viewer with continuous loop of film • The Kinetophone ◦ 1895 ◦ a kinetoscope with a phonograph installed in First Projected Films • the Lumiere Brothers o Paris o December 28th, 1895 o The Arrival of a Train Reasons for musical accompaniment • pragmatic: mechanical noise/mechanical problem • psychoanalytic: audience disturbed by ghost like images • continuity of tradition: long history of music accompaniment for visual presentation Venues • Vaudeville Theatres • Musical accompaniment provided by vaudeville orchestra • 1905 • Nickelodeon • 1907 — 3,000 • 1910 — over 10,000 • accompaniment provided by: gramophone, solo piano, piano with singer, small orchestra (less than 10 musicians) • Popular to classical — often little relationship to the film • improvisation to the film • “Illustrated songs” • without music, but its sound effects, live dialog or narration • continuous music provided mechanically (Phonograph or player piano) • Ballyhoo music The Shift to Narrative George Melies • early experimenter with camera effects • A Trip To The Moon (1902) • not the first narrative, but over ten minutes in length, multiple scenes, sets, costumes etc. — early model for narrative film to come Edwin Porter • The Great Train Robbery (1903) • First narrative film to use discontinuous action — cross cutting 1905-1910 • narrative films become most important element — films become longer — plots become more complex • change in musical aesthetic form entertaining the audience to “playing the picture” • supporting the drama and helping the audience to follow the plot • “fitting” or “synchronizing” • song title accompaniment • classical music and limited improvisation 1910 —1920s • film industry matures • movies are now 15 years old • films become longer, more sophisticated • first of the movie places built, 1912 • the rise of Hollywood and production companies ◦ paramount • Star-System takes ape (Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin • secondary industries appear: fan and industry magazines, music schools • Hollywood was the only place they could film movies without paying Thomas Edison and also a very nice place to shoot movies Accompaniment • some early attempts at creating original scores, but standard practice is either compilation of classic or popular music, or improvisation • 1909 — first attempt at “standardizing” musical accompaniment • Edison film company releases “musical suggestions” with each film • these were the first “cue sheets” with general scene by scene suggestions for musical accompaniment • 1912 Max Winkler (Carl Fischer Music) suggests specific prices of music, with timings • films would be shipped with the cue sheets, might also include music • problems with parts getting lost Resource books • Sam Fox Moving Picture Music • 1915 — complex theatre organ with built-in sound effects behind to appear in large and mid-sized theatres • 1921 — theatre organists school opens in Chicago • 1922 — 500 theatres with orchestra Trade papers: Motion Picture World, Moving Picture World • articles and columns on musical accompaniment • continuous • source music • song-title references — bad taste • use of themes • good music (classical music) to the masses Mid 1920s — no real change • vast range of performing forces and skills • rural or urban • missing cue sheets and scores • issues of “control” Lecture 4 Birth Of A Nation • 1915 • Composer/Adaptor: Joseph Carl Breil • D.W Griffith: Hollywoods first “great” director • Carli Elinor — a music “fitter” • heroes are the KKK, bad guys are the ones who wanted to end slavery • Breil, American Born, European trained musician and composer • assembles a continuous score 2/3s similar to Elinor, but 1/3 original material written for the film • Debut in march 1915 • Smaller orchestra o celebration at first, changes to more somber and more sad music as it goes on • Large Orchestra o celebration and up beat all the way through • Because of these different orchestras playing the music differently for the same scene, it changed the mood of the film o Everywhere you went, different musical accompaniments which would change the way the movie was interpreted • Solution: need to record music with the film (technological) • recorded and synchronized sound Transition to Sound • sound and silent films existed together for several years • talkies were seen as a fad • driven by progress in recording technology • demonstrations of sound films as early as 1922 • several competing systems emerge: • phonofilm (1923) - “sound on film” system ◦ photograph of sound waves on the edge of the film — excellent synchronization, poor audio quality • Warner Brother Vitaphone (1926) — audio recording on a phonograph disk, synchronized with the film projector — excellent audio quality, poor synchronization • 1926 — Don Juan ◦ recorded score primarily by William Axt, performed by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra ◦ Vitaphone — recorded music and some sound effects, no dialogue, still a silent film ◦ Also had a second score composed for a “live” performance. Why? most theatres had no sound systems The Jazz Singer — 1927 • musical supervisor: Louis Silvers • improvising dialogue in the clip we watched ◦ no script writers at this time, career was just invented at the time • rest of the film is a silent movie again • “not so much hearing him speak, but overhearing him speak" ◦ primarily silent, with several minutes of synchronized sound ◦ most of the score is compiled or adapted ◦ made use of the vitaphone system ◦ why is it still primarily a silent film? ◦ a financial hit ◦ singled the “beginning of the end” of the silent era Early Problems Aesthetics: • change in technology = change in aesthetics • Film had developed visually as a silent medium • Acting style / voices Making Films • all sound had to be recorded in real time • Cameras in large booths - no movement • Musicians on set - balance of sound music and dialog Showing Films • too many contesting sound systems • Small number of the 20,000 theatres equipped for sound • End of 1930 almost 9000 theatres • By 1935 the transition is complete • Massive layoffs of theatre music The Development of the Studio System • during the 1920s studios began to expand • Bringing together all the elements needed to make films under one company. Why? • By the early 1930s, Hollywood is divided into 8 studios • 1. The big five: MGM, Paramount, Warner Brothers, 20th Century Fox (1935) and RKO • Owned studios where they could shoot the films, had their own distribution networks and owned their own chain of movie theatres • 2. The little three: Universal, Columbia and United Artists • They owned major studio facilities which allowed them to manufacture films, but could not distribute or play it at a theatre without making a deal with the big five • People who were screen writers, actors etc. were signed to one of the big five • Signed to long term studio deals The Depression • 1930s • Even tighter control over all aspects of film • Numerous theatres closing • All aspects of production are departmentalized - directors, actors and musicians are put under contract - leads to the Studio System Max Steiner • 1888-1971 • Born in Vienna, middle class, father owned a theatre • A lot of big names spent a lot of time in Vienna • Formally trained in the tradition of European classical music • Child prodigy - conducting in theatre by 12 - touring as a director by 16 • One of his teachers was Gustav Mahler • Wrote operettas, first by age 17 • also worked as composer and conductor of music for stage in England • Facing deportation because of WWI comes to US in 1914 • Worked on broadway for 15 years • Invited to Hollywood in 1929, Rio Rita • Problems with actors voices - Hollywood turns into broadway • 1929 production of musicals and theatrical reviews • Rio Rita/Broadway Melody • By 1930, little music in dramatic films - "where does it come from?" • The Blue Angel (1930) all music originates from a diegetic source Cimarron • 1931 • Score by Max Steiner • David Selznick, at RKO recognized that more music might be good • 1932 • Symphony of 6 million and bird of paradise Lecture 5 King Kong • 1933 • worried that it would be a flop • steiner asked to compile a score • convinces producer to create an original score The Informer • 1935 • won academy award for “Best Original Score" Other Notable Films (Max Steiner) • Gone With The Wind (1939) • Casablanca (1942) • A Summer Place (1959) • Most of his career — head of music at Warner Bros. (1937-1953) • Most of his important work is during the 1930 to the early 1950s • Workaholic — contributed to over 300 film scored during his career • 1930s: sound film develops many of the conventions that will define it • begins as an extension of the silent film but by the end of the decade, technical advances and aesthetic changed have developed it into its own medium The Emigre Composer • Nazis force pout many of Europes artists and intellectuals • Erich Korngold, Dimitri Tiomkin, Franz Waxman, Ernst Gold, Hans Salter, Bronislau Kaper, Miklos Rosza • Most were composers trained in the traditions of European art music and these traditions (Operatic) were translated into Hollywood during the 1930s • Alfred Newman and Herbert Stothart are two of the few important American born composers of the period Erich Wolfgang Korngold • 1897-1957 • born in 1897 in Vienna • childhood prodigy • son of noted music critic • teachers included Strauss and Mahler • 1934, Mendelssohn’s “A Midsummer Nights Dream” • liked Hollywood, returned several times over the next few years to do scores • ** the only major composer of the 1930s who freelances, does not work under studio contract • does only 1-2 films a year • Academy Award for Anthony Adverse (1936) • In 1938, Korngold asked to do Robin Hood but refused • Austria annexed by the Nazis and all of his family wealth and property was seized • Academy Award for Robin Hood — first time award was given directly to composer, not head of music department • remained in Hollywood, died in 1957, disappointed that he was ever able to regain his position as a serious composer • Freelanced, composer only 19 film scores in 12 years • wrote in a 19th century romantic style (like wagner and strauss) — considered his scored to be like “little operas” • focus on extended melodies • phrased the drama • developed a series of approaches for battle scenes ◦ loud dynamics ◦ use of rapid scale passages ◦ irregular, aggressive accents ◦ occasional motive reference • also made use of the overture at the beginning of each film presenting certain themes The Sea Hawk • 1940 • extended themes • use of music in battle scene • brass fanfare • fanfare: music played at regal ceremony ◦ when the queen enters scene 1 • opening credits — uses an overture — heroic / love • heroic theme uses brass fanfare / love theme uses strings scene 2 • phrases the drama — sets mood and parallels the battle • drops under dialog — hits the thrown knife — drops pacing under the retreat… • blending of source and score with the sounding of the retreat Robin Hood • 1938 Scene 1 • opening — overture: 3 themes — musical form? represents? • first two baed on a march — group activity — theme for the Merry Men • Final theme sounds like the love theme — strings (6th interval) Scene 3 • theme will be used when main characters join the merry men • first heard with Little John — french horn • stylistic blend of source music • hitting the action during the dual • woodwind “water” theme — similar to many operatic examines • concludes with merry men theme Scene 4: Friar Tuck • similar to little john scene • initial theme played primarily on bassoon and muted trumpet — comic • sword fight — same theme as little john battle — more exciting • woodwind “water” theme again • concluded with merry men theme *Lecture 6* The Adventures of Robin Hood • 1938 Scene 5: Marion and Robin 1 • quiet variation of the Peril theme as Marion sees the Saxons • two themes during Marion/Robin dialog — second theme from opening credits — which is the love theme (or are both?) Scene 6: Marion and Robin 2 • love theme 1 for the big kiss — big strings / moment of spectacle • love theme 2 — quiet cello — much more intimate Scene 7: King Richard • love them 2 (from opening credits) gets most dramatic statement with the reveal of richard • 1940 sea hawk gave a strong theme of individual hero Style of Korngold • romantic orchestral style operatic approach • use of themes, often long and involved • often phrases the drama • allowing themes to unfold without distortions • links hitting the action Alfred Newman • 1900-1970 1930s • depression era films were often spectacular or escapist The Adventures of Robin Hood, Lost Horizon • 1937 The Wizard of Oz • 1939 • for a lot of people, these movies and hollywood were escapes because people were trying to forget about the depression Into the 1940s • the 1940s interest in stories that are more realistic • psychological drama, complex motivations, character driven narrative ◦ the “dark side” of the human condition • good and bad characters ◦ even the good guy did the wrong thing sometimes • films were shot in black and white ◦ black and white deals with shadows and contrast • WW2 going on during this time • film noir • in part driven by the cynicism brought on by WW2 • the 1940s are when we see an increase in the number of american born composers rising to prominence in Hollywood such as • Hugo Friedhofer • Bernard Herrmann • David Raksin Miklos Rosza • 1907-1995 • hungarian • born into an art family • grew up with a concert pianist for a mother • successful career as composer • at the suggestion of arthur honegger, rosza goes into film scoring (1934) • does one film work in england, 1934-1939 • due to WW2, travels to US in 1939 to complete the thief of bagdad (1940) • Rosza is also an important composers of the 1950s — but he would be remembered for scoring a very different kind of picture than film Noir Jungle Book • 1942 • first soundtrack released on record in the US Double Indemnity • 1944 • short themes — unpredictable — unsettling • moving away from clear tonality • modernism • the movement in art that follows the romantic era • modernism was a respinse to the horror of WW1 • 1945: spellbound and the lost weekend • both nominated for Academy Awards ◦ SB won • both films are psychological in nature, dealing with disturbed characters • both used the theremin (electronic instrument) • one of the first times we see the use of an electronic instrument in a film score The Lost Weekend • Part 1 • begins with sense of positive urgency • becomes tonal/romantic with mention of Helen • comic/uncertain as he fumbles with hat and cigarette • turns darker as he sees the bottle — theremin enters • drama building during the search — music playing the internal struggle • part 2 • only source music — Burnham from the exterior — music would add drama — without he appears pathetic David Raksin • 1912-2004 • born in philadelphia • father was a conductor of silent films • early career as a pianist and arranger for Jazz bands in NY (Benny Goodman) • worked with Chaplin on Modern Times — entry into film music 1935 ◦ chaplin was self taught, didn’t know how to write notes on manuscript which was important for making music, or having other musicians play your music Laura • 1944 • director otto preminger wanted “sophisticated lady” by duke ellington (about a prostitute) • Rain composed own theme (famous heartbreak story) •
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