Suggested Reading List
The National Trust Guide to Great Opera Houses in America
Author: Karyl Lynn Zietz
The Perilous Life of Symphony Orchestras: Artistic Triumphs and Economic Challenges
Author: Robert J. Flanagan
Film Music: A Very Short Introduction
Author: Kathryn Kalinak
Description: Film music is as old as cinema itself. Years before synchronized sound became the norm, projected moving images were shown to musical accompaniment, whether performed by a lone piano player or a hundred-piece orchestra. Today film music has become its own industry, indispensable to the marketability of movies around the world.
Film Music: A Very Short Introduction is a compact, lucid, and thoroughly engaging overview written by one of the leading authorities on the subject. After opening with a fascinating analysis of the music from a key sequence in Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs, Kathryn Kalinak introduces readers not only to important composers and musical styles but also to modern theoretical concepts about how and why film music works. Throughout the book she embraces a global perspective, examining film music in Asia and the Middle East as well as in Europe and the United States. Key collaborations between directors and composers--Alfred Hitchcock and Bernard Herrmann, Akira Kurosawa and Fumio Hayasaka, Federico Fellini and Nino Rota, to name only a few--come under scrutiny, as do the oft-neglected practices of the silent film era. She also explores differences between original film scores and compilation soundtracks that cull music from pre-existing sources.
As Kalinak points out, film music can do many things, from establishing mood and setting to clarifying plot points and creating emotions that are only dimly realized in the images. This book illuminates the many ways it accomplishes those tasks and will have its readers thinking a bit more deeply and critically the next time they sit in a darkened movie theater and music suddenly swells as the action unfolds onscreen.
A History of Film Music
Author: Mervyn Cooke
Description: This book provides a comprehensive and lively introduction to the major trends in film scoring from the silent era to the present day, focussing not only on dominant Hollywood practices but also offering an international perspective by including case studies of the national cinemas of the UK, France, India, Italy, Japan and the early Soviet Union. The book balances wide-ranging overviews of film genres, modes of production and critical reception with detailed non-technical descriptions of the interaction between image track and soundtrack in representative individual films. In addition to the central focus on narrative cinema, separate sections are also devoted to music in documentary and animated films, film musicals and the uses of popular and classical music in the cinema. The author analyses the varying technological and aesthetic issues that have shaped the history of film music, and concludes with an account of the modern film composer's working practices.
Andrew Lloyd Webber (Yale Broadway Masters Series)
Author: John Snelson
Andrew Lloyd Webber is the most famous—and most controversial—composer of musical theater alive today. Hundreds of millions of people have seen his musicals, which include Cats, The Phantom of the Opera, Starlight Express, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita, and Sunset Boulevard. Even more know his songs.
Lloyd Webber’s many awards include seven Tonys and three Grammys—but he has nonetheless been the subject of greater critical vitriol than any of his artistic peers. Why have both the man and his work provoked such extreme responses? Does he challenge his audiences, or merely recycle the comfortable and familiar? Over three decades, how has Lloyd Webber changed fundamentally what a musical can be?
In this sustained examination of Lloyd Webber’s creative career, the music scholar John Snelson explores the vast range of influences that have informed Lloyd Webber’s work, from film, rock, and pop music to Lloyd Webber’s own life story. This rigorous and sympathetic survey will be essential reading for anyone interested in Lloyd Webber’s musicals and the world of modern musical theater that he has been so instrumental in shaping.
Swing Changes: Big-Band Jazz in New Deal America
Author: David W. Stowe
Description: Bands were playing, people were dancing, the music business was booming. It was the big-band era, and swing was giving a new shape and sound to American culture. "Swing Changes" looks at New Deal America through its music and shows us how the contradictions and tensions within swing - over race, politics, its own cultural status, the role of women - mirrored those played out in the larger society. Drawing on memoirs, oral histories, newspapers, magazines, recordings, photographs, literature and films, "Swing Changes" offers a picture of American society at a pivotal time, and a perspective on music as a cultural force.