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Topic: Dramatic theatre music

  1. #1

    Dramatic theatre music

    G'evening, GPOers

    Thought I would post my very first attempts with GPO. These tracks were created excusively with GPO samples.

    The music was written and/or arranged for a stage play called "Someone Who'll Watch Over Me" by Frank McGuinness. (It is based on the true story of three hostages - an American, an Englishman, and an Irishman - in a cell somewhere in the middle east. A VERY powerful and timely play written about 10 years ago.)

    I was asked to provide underscoring for several long speeches. After I did all the writing and/or arranging, the director and I agreed (after running with the actors on stage) that it was too distracting against the speeches. A hard lesson to learn, but the music remains some of my personal favourite, and probably most mature. (Not a total loss: most of it was played through the intermission, while they kept the non-intrusive bits like the Prologue and scene change cues in place.)

    These three tracks are GPO only so it seems appropriate to list them. (If you're curious about the other tracks, including a merging of Gershwin's "Someone To Watch Over Me", with a mid-eastern "English Patient" theme that I wrote, go to my website, listed below.) Indeed, if you want a CD with all the music, let me know (there's about 20 minutes worth)!

    01 The Eulogy (Steve Gallant)

    02 "My father was absent at Christmas" (Abide With Me, trad., arr. Steve Gallant)

    03 "Da, it's me" (The River is Wide, trad., arr. Steve Gallant)

    Hey, you! Thanks for listening!
    Steve A. Gallant


  2. #2

    Re: Dramatic theatre music

    Minor bumpage here.
    Steve A. Gallant


  3. #3

    Talking Re: Dramatic theatre music

    What Neo said ! plus track 2 sounded a bit like canon sometimes which is one of my favs. Great work !

  4. #4

    Re: Dramatic theatre music

    Thank you both.

    Oops. Bumped again, I guess.
    Steve A. Gallant


  5. #5

    Re: Dramatic theatre music

    very nice. a live vivaldi piece started playing after yours in my mp3 player and the texture of the two pieces was comparable. Good mix.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New York City

    Re: Dramatic theatre music

    These pieces sound very realistic and very lovely. It's interesting that this is for the stage. They sound more like underscoring for film. The reason why I find it interesting is because that's exactly how I direct staged shows - I direct them more like film (perhaps because I'm most influenced by film). And I LOVE lots of underscoring in a staged production, which isn't done often enough in my opinion (which isn't shared by many in the theatre world, when it comes to underscoring).
    - Michael Fortunato

  7. #7

    Re: Dramatic theatre music

    Quote Originally Posted by mfortunato
    <snip>And I LOVE lots of underscoring in a staged production, which isn't done often enough in my opinion (which isn't shared by many in the theatre world, when it comes to underscoring).

    Your feelings on this topic are interesting to me.

    I've done music for about four dramatic events over the last couple of years, and this one ("Someone Who'll Watch Over Me"), ended up being the most problematic. But I didn't know this until AFTER the music was written and tested with the actors.

    The director wanted underscoring for some of the longer speeches, makes sense, right? Well, when we tested it, the actors couldn't concentrate, and the music interferred with the scene too much. Now, I grant you that it's probably my fault, for writing music that is too "busy", rather than a bit more "monotone" in colour. (You can be the judge from the samples in this topic's first post.)

    Anyway, I learned a valuable lesson... to REALLY REALLY think hard and long about underscoring speeches when asked... and maybe even talk the director out of it.

    The opening music cue, as well as scene changes worked fine.

    Interesting thing: One of my previous directors (Jane McCulloch, who has worked with actress Dame Judi Dench and composer Carl Davis) told me my music would work well in a film. (Now, maybe this was her polite way of telling me that my music was too dramatic the adaptation of "Love's Labours Lost" that we did together. )

    Thanks for listening!
    Steve A. Gallant


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