Bernard Herrmann's The Ghost And Mrs. Muir

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Author David Cooper examines the career of Bernard Herrmann, as well as the specific elements that went into the creation of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir's score. Cooper traces the development of Herrmann's craft as a film composer, especially through his radio work, where he made contact with Orson Welles, which led to his first film score, Citizen Kane. In this guide, Cooper considers Herrmann's musical technique and offers a theorization of some of the ways in which music can be _meaningful_ in film. A quantitative, evidence-based study of the score is provided, in which, the extent to which Herrmann adopted screenwriter Philip Dunne's suggestions for music in the screenplay are discussed. A rundown of all the cues found in Herrmann's manuscript is followed by an examination of the score as a musicological artifact, and in his evaluation of the overall approach to the soundtrack, the author considers the musical detail of the score's structure, its themes and their orchestration. He also explores non-musical contexts of the film, including the screenplay's relationship to the popular novel from which it was adapted, as well as the contribution of director Joseph L. Mankiewicz and the performances of Gene Tierney and Rex Harrison. Cooper's thoughtful assessment of Herrmann's score is a fine tribute to this major work by a great and influential composer.

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Editorial Reviews

Reference and Research Book News
In this guide, Cooper (music and technology, U. of Leeds, UK) examines Bernard Herrmann's craft as a film composer, particularly in the score of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. He also explores nonmusical elements of the film, including the screenplay's relationship to the popular novel from which it was adapted, the contribution of director Joseph Mankiewicz, and the performances of Gene Tierney and Rex Harrison. A rundown of all the cues in Herrmann's manuscript is followed by an examination of the score as a musical artifact.
Music From The Movies
...David Cooper's approach—tightly organized like an intro film theory class—will instill, certainly in some, new methods of appreciating film music....Like prior volumes in the series, the book's first section gives us an excellent portrait of the events that led the cast, crew, and composer towards the film project...Cooper's technical and theoretical breakdowns will be of particular interest to composers...There's no doubt this book is the result of a long and detailed effort to craft an important educational reference...
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810856790
  • Publisher: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
  • Publication date: 8/28/2005
  • Series: Scarecrow Film Score Guides , #5
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 186
  • Sales rank: 1,134,536
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

David Cooper is Professor of Music and Technology and Head of the School of Music at the University of Leeds. He is the coeditor of The Mediterranean in Music: Critical Perspectives, Common Concerns, Cultural Differences (Scarecrow Press, Inc., 2005) and author of Bernard Herrmann's Vertigo: A Film Score Handbook.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 List of Illustrations Part 2 Abbreviations Part 3 Editor's Foreword Part 4 Acknowledgments Part 5 Introduction Chapter 6 1. Herrmann's Career up to the Composition of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir Chapter 7 2. Musical Style and Musical Meaning: Herrmann's Film Scoring Technique Chapter 8 3. Literary, Filmic and Critical Context of the Score Chapter 9 4. Overview of the Score as a Musical Text Chapter 10 5. Analysis and Readings of the Score Part 11 Notes Part 12 Bibliography Part 13 Index Part 14 About the Author

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