Composing Film Score for fantastic films · Music for Media· Film Score OST · Angela Mintegi

Composing Film Score ...

Composing Film Score for fantastic films

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(0) 04/09/2016 20:09h

Cinema is, by definition, fiction and fantasy. Indeed, the most realistic film is plenty of tricks that falsify the reality.
Strategies for amplifying, simplifying or directly manipulate the reality.
First of all the extradiegetic music.
Is it normal listening a full symphonic Orchestra with a full male- female chorus of 30 people sounding in a middle of a battle in the field?
Or, by the way, An emotional sequence of misery in the suburbs of a great city is accompanied by the sound of a perfect tune and exquisitely played piano Stenway?
It doesn´t seem logic. And, however, we use to assimilate in that way the story. And we accept it with quite naturally.
Yes, We do those concessions in the musicalization of scenes of the real world without be perturbed.
And it is admitted that "it´s all right".
The music applied doesn´t need to recall the period or place or whatever the characteristics of the story.
It´s true that, in many cases, is doing this service and justifies its existence by that.
But I refer now to the other music. The purely emotive.
The one which has been put there just to move emotionally the spectator in some way.



Composing Film Score always is funny, stimulant and so on.
But composing the Film Score for fantasy genre is presented as the summum of the invention.
The characters are new. Neither humans no animals. The landscapes, unexplored.  The situations never seen.
Which kind of music may put in? Everything is good for!
(Ahem!  ... whatever says the director hahaha!)
If the sequence represented is invented. If we don´t need recall references of historic period or place, it seems that it´s open to a wide range of possibilities.
I´m going to talk about a concrete case.

I´ve started this post because I´ve been composing the Film Score for a Fantasy Film.
At the first time, the temptation it was to use the most strange sounds. Exploring the synthesizers and looking for a lot of  FX sounds.
Later, in a creative pirouette, and in order to go on with the story, I decided to make changes  "jazzing" the theme.
All of this it was composed and applied. At trial. And it was discarded.
Finally, and after the corresponding conversation with direction, the conclusion is clear:  The story is typical adventure, fantasy, CLASSICAL film.
It´s demanded a forceful soundtrack with its fanfare of brass, large string ensemble, timpani and cymbals.

Symphonic Orquestra of Galicia

So, the order is to write an...

Orchestral Fantasy Film Score

The Symphonic Orchestra is able to get millions of sound touches.
The fantastic situations can be showed up by the timber of Woodwinds, the proof of Double bass and the caw or fineness of Brass.
The Timpani speed up, the cymbals mutter or crash violently.
It´s not necessary to use synthesizers to go to the future or to the fairy forest.
To write an Orchestral Score is the funniest of all. But to compose a Film Score imply to keep in mind the spectator.
The audience will watch the movie, will wake up, and will go away.
They can´t listen again to the music they´ve listened.
The music must be forceful, understandable, lovely and efficient in a first listening. And probably the one.
Isn´t it the cause of which we should be more careful?
Well. Now I´m going to go straight on to the polemic. It´s not new the idea that defends the composers of the soundtracks are worse than the classical composers of concerts.
Don´t start to protest, please. I don´t subscribe to this theory at all.
Obviously a lot of composers have written Film Scores and Concert pieces equally.
But someones have developed their careers in the Cinema and they have proved largely their talent and geniality.
In my opinion, the score for the film has a component, even in a small amount, of  "easy listening music".  At the meaning I talked about before, of not very difficult assimilation.
If the director realize that the audience is thinking about the music and is going out of the story, it´s possible she is not very comfortable.
All of this implies that the music of the film can be genial or mediocre, but suitable for all the ears and simple in its "feeling".

Corpse Bride

Great classical composers have could be used (and they have been used, in fact) to ambient fantastic films. From Beethoven to Stravinsky in the great "Fantasy" (Dysney, 1940).
And great contemporary composers are dedicated to compose for this genre. John Williams, Danny Elfman,  to mention just two, show us so much can do  the symphonic orchestra for painting the most special movies.
We´ll follow in the footsteps. It´s left a lot of fantastic music to write.

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In this blog. I´ll go writing posts about the Composition of Soundtracks for film.  As it would be news about this subject,  as of works from me or others,  I´ll try to bring up to date it.

Berklee College of Music

Music for Media Ángela Mintegi · Tel: +34 606 91 20 66

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