Far From Heaven [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

Far From Heaven [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

by Elmer Bernstein
     
 

Reviewing this CD is one of the most refreshing tasks that this writer has been given in many years -- that's not surprising when one considers that it's been at least 35 years since a movie score like Elmer Bernstein's music for Far From Heaven has come across this reviewer's desk; indeed, the last time it happened, stereo was a relatively new feature in…  See more details below

Overview

Reviewing this CD is one of the most refreshing tasks that this writer has been given in many years -- that's not surprising when one considers that it's been at least 35 years since a movie score like Elmer Bernstein's music for Far From Heaven has come across this reviewer's desk; indeed, the last time it happened, stereo was a relatively new feature in listening pleasure, and this reviewer was in grade school. At its best moments, which is most of its length, Bernstein's music recalls the delicacy of his score for To Kill a Mockingbird -- everything here is so finely nuanced and played with such quiet, understated eloquence, and takes its time getting where it's going without ever seeming indulgent. The music uses an orchestra of 50 pieces, with Cynthia Millar's piano featured in several of the sections. The score offers an achingly beautiful main theme -- best carried by the violins -- that is used sparingly and played with sufficient variation and embellishment so that it's not remotely repetitive; it's all handled with admirable restraint. One result of that understated quality is that the sole part of the soundtrack that does push itself hard, "Crying," is that much more effective in these surroundings. "Turning Point," which follows, is a sweetly melodic idyll with gorgeous parts for the piano, harp, and strings, and is almost worth the price of the CD by itself. "Cathy and Raymond Dance," by contrast, is written in the idiom of the light jazz of the late '50s, offering its own charms and virtues, and "Disapproval" uses the same thematic material in a more dramatic (but still restrained) orchestral approach. One of the nice side benefits of this soundtrack having come out in the CD era is that the music doesn't have to be played terribly loudly to make its full impact on the listener at home -- a score this finely wrought, released on vinyl, would have had all kinds of hiss, not to mention the inevitable ticks and pops inherent in the format. In 2002, it's possible to savor it in ways that home audiences in the 1950s simply couldn't have. It is also fully annotated, both by Bernstein and the movie's director, Todd Haynes, and every member of the orchestra is credited.

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Product Details

Release Date:
11/05/2002
Label:
Varese Sarabande
UPC:
0030206642124
catalogNumber:
066421

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Autumn in Connecticut  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  2. Mother Love  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  3. Evening Rest  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  4. Walking Through Town  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  5. Prowl  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  6. The F Word  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  7. unspecified  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  8. Party  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  9. Hit  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  10. Crying  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  11. Turning Point  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  12. Cathy and Raymond Dance  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  13. Disapproval  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  14. Walk Away  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  15. Miami  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  16. Back to Basics  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  17. Stones  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  18. Revelation and Decision  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  19. Remembrance  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  20. More Pain  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  21. Transition  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony
  22. Beginnings  -  Hollywood Studio Symphony

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Elmer Bernstein   Primary Artist,Conductor
Robert Adcock   Cello
Murray Adler   Violin
William Booth   Trombone
Carole Castillo   Viola
Douglas Davis   Cello
Earl Dumler   Oboe
Assa Drori   Violin
Arni Egilsson   Bass,Bassoon
Mike Englander   Percussion
Pamela Goldsmith   Viola
Harris Goldman   Violin
Susan Greenberg   Flute
Michael Markman   Violin
Joe Meyer   Horn
Carole Mukogawa   Viola
Irma Neumann   Violin
Barbara Porter   Violin
Linda Rose   Violin
James Sawyer   Trombone
John Steinmetz   Bassoon
Kevan Torfeh   Cello
Gary Woodward   Flute
Gayle Levant   Harp
Rick Naill   Cello
Renita Koven   Viola
Julie Rogers   Violin
Lisa Sutton   Violin
Tommy Johnson   Tuba
Cynthia Miller   Piano
Cynthia Millar   Piano
Robert Sanders   Trombone
Carolyn Drake   Horn
Ayke Agus   Violin
Emily Bernstein   Clarinet
Margot Aldcroft   Viola
Jennifer Munday   Violin
Britt Swenson   Violin
Trevor Handy   Cello
Piotr Jandula   Viola
Ishani Bhoola   Violin
Liliana Filipovic   Violin
Hollywood Studio Symphony   Performing Ensemble
Songa Lee   Violin
Theresa Dimond   Percussion
Donald Ferrone   Bass
Louise di Tullio   Flute
Jon Lewis   Trumpet
Gary Gray   Clarinet

Technical Credits

Elmer Bernstein   Producer,Essay
Robert Townson   Executive Producer
Dan Wallin   Engineer
Patrick Russ   Arranger
Todd Haynes   Director,Liner Notes

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