Monday, March 29, 2004

Yes, it's serious music, dammit!

If you ever want to see some thin skins in action, just wander onto a film music discussion board and suggest, in as condescending a tone as possible, that film music doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as real classical music.

Some people out there, though, get it: of course it does. The Washington Times had a great article the other day about it. (I know, liberal bloggers aren't supposed to approvingly link the Washington Times. Well, I'm doin' it anyway. Harumph.)

Here are a couple of key passages from the article:

"The death of classical music in the 20th century has become an almost tiresome cliche, but maybe now is the time to ask if these reports of serious music's demise have been greatly exaggerated. Perhaps we have just been looking for it in the wrong place. Perhaps it merely went into hiding in a place where you would least expect it: the Hollywood soundstage.... As these new recordings and others amply demonstrate, it is long past time to recognize Hollywood's greatest film scores as significant milestones in the legitimate classical repertoire. Continued academic snobbery and pointless experimentation will only further alienate musical culture from its traditional and popular roots in the unities of dramatic presentation and formal structure."

Go read the whole thing. The re-recording of Erich Wolfgang Korngold's The Adventures of Robin Hood score to which the article refers is here. It's worth noting that William Stromberg and the Marco Polo label have been re-recording classic film scores for years, and that this is only the most recent of their releases.

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