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Magnificient Movie Music!

A Multimedia Lecture Series
Presented by Rachel Franklin, DMA
Thursdays from 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
May 4, 11, and 18, 2017

Please note that the May 18 event has been moved to the Bennett Park Atrium, 1601 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington, 22209.
Click here for directions and parking information

Optional Happy Hour begins at 6:00 pm

Tickets purchased online will be held at Will Call and can be picked up the evening of the lecture.

Do you like the movies? Do you like the music in movies? Well, do we have a special event for you!

The Arlington Philharmonic and Rachel Franklin, DMA, are excited to announce a new 3-week lecture course devoted entirely to movie music. Experiencing a great film score can have a life-long impact. Director Norman Jewison (In the Heat of the Night, Moonstruck) stated: "The marriage of the moving image and music is perhaps the most powerful visual communication we have.” Composers such as Bernard Herrmann, Max Steiner, Ennio Morricone, and John Williams have engraved iconic scenes into our collective memory with their extraordinary music, even if the rest of the movie might have faded.

During this course, we will explore the stories behind some of the greatest film music ever composed. We’ll consider the purpose of a fine score and how it both supports and transforms the film so we frequently fall in love with the movie through the music. Film music can inspire and romance us. It can make emotional statements that a script simply can’t, it can subvert a plot with a completely different subtext, and inject irony, fear or humor when there is apparently none on screen. Music can salvage a bad movie and make a good one great.

Over three lectures, we’ll watch fascinating film clips and discuss the role of the score in each, comparing our responses, and delving into the history and craft behind the composer’s work. We’ll look at the role of the movie director, the use of classical concert music in countless films, enjoy some Oscar-winning sounds and share great movie trivia. Fasten your seatbelts…it’s going to be a fabulous ride!

Read Dr. Franklin's biography here.

May 4:  Getting Under Our Skin

A great film score gets under your skin, triggers your subconscious, enhances the drama and helps drive the emotional power train of the movie." Alan Parker (Mississippi Burning, Birdy). While we frequently don’t notice the music underpinning the movie, our response to it is pretty much universal. Our pulse can race, we get goose bumps, our stomachs churn, our tear ducts fill up – listening to film music is a very physical business! We begin our conversation by playing Spot the Score and exploring why most of the answers are so well known to everyone. We’ll examine the evolution of the movie soundtrack from silent films onwards (these were never actually silent), and dip into some of the most famous moments in movie music history.

Films discussed include:

  • Up
  • Jaws
  • Laura
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
  • Henry V
  • Dr. Strangelove

May 11:  Beethoven Goes to Hollywood

The director Sidney Lumet (Network, Serpico) said :"Almost every picture is improved by a good musical score.” Judging by the enormous amount of historic classical concert music used in movies, some directors don’t want to mess with success!

Beethoven, Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Richard Strauss, Mascagni, Bach…works of almost every famous composer over the last three centuries can be found adding emotional depth to hundreds of films.

Is this just piggybacking on the power of classical music or can such use be justified consistently?

Films discussed include:

  • 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • The King’s Speech
  • The Shining
  • Death In Venice
  • The Social Network

May 18:  Five of the Great Masterpieces

A Civil War Southern belle scrabbling in the dirt for food, a terrifying shower scene, young children processing the evils of racism, lethal gun-toting apes on horseback, galactic heroes fighting with The Force – even these simple descriptions bring music to mind. Max Steiner (1888-1971), Bernard Herrmann (1911-1975), Elmer Bernstein (1922-2004), Jerry Goldsmith (1929-2004), and John Williams (1932) are five of our greatest movie composers, whose works continue to grace screens large and small today. In the interests of time (but not inclination!), we’ll examine just one film score by each of these masters, discussing what elements make their music so exceptional and influential in the development of movie scoring techniques.

Films discussed include:

  • Gone With the Wind
  • Psycho
  • To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Planet of the Apes
  • Star Wars

Copyright Rachel Franklin, February 2017

Join Us for Happy Hour at 6 p.m.

Happy Hour starts at 6:00 p.m. Wine, beer, and snacks will be offerrd for sale.

Happy Hour is generously sponsored by The Crystal City Wine Shop and Deschutes Brewery
The lectures will begin promptly at 7:00 p.m.