16 February 2007

Bernard Herrmann's movie music

Easily my favourite film score composer is the great Bernard Herrmann (1911-1975), who scored films from Citizen Kane to Taxi Driver. The scores he wrote for Alfred Hitchcock between 1955 and 1966 are especially memorable. Two documentaries on Herrmann's contribution have recently been posted on youtube: Music for the Movies: Bernard Herrmann and Howard Goodall's 20th Century Greats on Herrmann. The former looks at Herrmann from a cinematic perspective, featuring the murder sequence in Torn Curtain with the composer's rejected score added. There can be no doubt that this would have been a chilling scene if Herrmann's music had been used. The second documentary looks at Herrmann's work from a musicological standpoint. Both are definitely worth seeing.

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