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Topic: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

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  1. #1

    A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    In the past several months, I've posted the first four numbers from my stage musical, "Dorian-The Remarkable Mr. Gray," based on Oscar Wilde's novel, "The Picture of Dorian Gray." My last post from the show featured the Garritan Strad playing the instrumental version of a song which will be used as audience exit music at the end of Act Two.

    Continuing on through the score, the next section of the show is comprised mostly of reiterations and reworkings of material from the first four numbers.

    It's a scene between three characters, with sung passages as well as dialogue set to underscoring.

    To help you understand this scene, I've recorded a scratch vocal version of it, with me playing all three characters involved.

    The four sections of the scene are:

    1) "Self Development"-reprise. Lord Henry Wotton and Dorian Gray are in Basil Hallward's paint studio, and Henry is reinforcing what he told Dorian earlier about the importance of seizing life while Dorian is still young. Musically, a motif from the show's opening, "Prelude" is heard as well as elements from "Self Development."

    2) "Revealing The Picture." Basil Hallward, the painter, re-enters and for the first time shows Dorian (and the audience) the large portrait he's just completed of Dorian. Under the influence of Henry's strange and magnetic influence, Dorian sees the picture as something frightening and foreboding.

    3) "Dorian's Prayer." First a brief new theme as Dorian fervently wishes he could have perpetual youth while the painting ages instead of himself. Then a Short reprise of "Somewhere In-between" in which Dorian's internal thoughts are again heard by the audience.

    --The second half of "Dorian's Prayer" is an argument between Dorian and Basil, where the artist almost destroys the painting, since Dorian's reaction to it has been so unexpectedly violent and fearful.

    There follows a bit more dialogue which I've omitted from this demo recording. It's the wrap up of the scene, spoken in the awkward silence which follows the revealing of the picture.

    4) "Every Picture Painted"-reprise. Briefly, after Henry and Dorian leave, Basil is left alone with his creation, sadly realizing that his friendship with Dorian has irrevocably changed, and that strange powers seem to have been unleashed.

    Link to this whole scene:

    http://www.box.net/shared/x5a2l0hcsc


    And here are the links to what I've previously posted from my show:

    "Prelude"

    http://www.box.net/public/static/9qscxg3e58.wma

    "Every Picture Painted" - instrumental


    http://www.box.net/shared/96t7h3y5ra


    and "Every Picture Painted" as a vocal demo, featuring Mark Petruzzi.

    http://www.box.net/shared/static/h56fplt3yo.mp3


    "Self Development" and "Somewhere In-Between" - instrumental of two continuous songs, because they are performed non-stop in the show.

    http://www.box.net/shared/v7b5q66bxn

    and "Somewhere In-Between" as a vocal demo with me singing.

    http://www.box.net/shared/static/7ichvh2ud7.mp3


    And finally, jumping into Act Two, my first piece done with the Garritan Stradivari features the violin as the lead in an instrumental version of the show's love song, to be played as the audience exits at the end of the show:

    http://www.box.net/shared/static/95mfdguroh.mp3

    As mentioned above, this new post is a condensation of the scene which follows Dorian's solo, "In-between."

    Thank you for listening!

    --GPO - the majority of instrumentation
    --Korg X5dr - drums, bass, and misc. sounds
    --CZ-1000 - misc. sounds
    --various free VST soft synths
    --Sonar Home Studio 4XL (and some of its plugins, including the SFZ Sound Font player)
    --S.I.R. convolution reverb
    --Sound Forge - mastering
    --Tascam US-122 audio/MIDI interface - vocal recording


    Randy B.
    (rbowser)
    Last edited by rbowser-; 05-28-2007 at 11:48 AM. Reason: fixing some clumsy syntax

  2. #2

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Really inventive orchestrations, moments of comedy, drama, romance... The variety of synthesizers and samples (especially GPO and the Strad) really works; this is one of the most realistic renderings I've heard. Awesome.

  3. #3

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    This is just great. Musically I love it and my wife (huge theatre fan) probably would too. Sonically, your production is spot-on and I wish I could get my tunes to sound like yours.

    Looking forward to more as always.
    -Chris

    PS - for some reason I feel like it's missing the whole "this particular day of June" bit... but maybe he says that elsewhere? Either way I suppose it's an artistic decision.
    There is the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. Therefore there must be a God. You either get this one or you don't - Kreeft & Tacelli
    The will to achieve is not sufficient. Some things should not be achieved. - Rimsky-Korsakov
    Musicians are just these guys that want to make music. Okay, they want to have a wonderful lifestyle, but the majority just want to make really great music. - Jon Anderson


  4. #4

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Thank you Cerrabore and Suspenlute for listening and replying!

    Posting the numbers from my show has been a slow on-going process since I first joined the Forums and a number of people urged me to continue posting so they could hear the entire show.

    It's difficult to provide enough information on each post to explain the context of each piece without being a complete bore! This current thread has Way more info and links than most people will care to digest.

    But still I try to explain best I can, because posting a number from the show devoid of any attempt to explain its context would be even more confusing, and wouldn't serve the music very well.

    Cerrabore, thanks so much for your enthusiasm! I hope you take the opportunity to listen to the previous posts which I've recapped on this thread.

    And Chris, Suspenlute--thank You for your wonderful encouragement also.

    You said:

    "...for some reason I feel like it's missing the whole "this particular day of June" bit... but maybe he says that elsewhere?..."

    I think you mean that you're hearing this new post without a contextual reference, and I understand how that can be confusing, as per my paragraphs above.

    This new bit I've put up is starting in the middle of a scene which has been going on for about 10 minutes. We're picking things up mid-way, and as I tried to outline in my thread starter, the majority of this material is reprise.

    The scene-setting that I think you're missing starts with "Prelude," the first thing from the show I posted.

    These documents clear things up, if you want to get a better idea of the musical as a whole. I wrote these PDF files for when I was active on the Cakewalk Forums, and the guys there were helping me improve my mixes. At the time I was really trying to explain everything, since I knew it's a big disadvantage to present music which is intended to be the backdrop for a visual experience--a stage production.

    You may want to look at these PDF files:

    Intro to the show written for the Cakewalk group:

    http://www.box.net/shared/0ld1u0nauv

    "Prelude" lyrics:

    http://www.box.net/shared/ctqy1g5ipo



    "Every Picture" notes:

    http://www.box.net/shared/5muua2h3ef

    "Every Picture" lyrics:

    http://www.box.net/shared/tj06ox31to

    Thanks again, guys--I really appreciate your replies.

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)

  5. #5

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Cerrabore, thanks so much for your enthusiasm! I hope you take the opportunity to listen to the previous posts which I've recapped on this thread.
    Yes, I listened to everything. I particularly like "Prelude." It's a strong, evocative mood setter, for sure. Just really inventive, yet classic (in the making, let's hope) music.

  6. #6
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    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Hi Randy, it is coming very well. I enjoyed the new scene very much. I never read the original book – how closely are you following it? I have read enough about the book to know that in some ways Oscar Wilde was moralizing against living the lifestyle he was living while he wrote the book… Not as shocking as it was 100 or so years ago….

    So far I really like what you’ve done. I even like your singing – you do a good job of bringing out the characters, though occasionally I lose track of who is talking for just a second or two.

    Can’t wait to hear the next installment.
    Trent P. McDonald

  7. #7

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser-
    And Chris, Suspenlute--thank You for your wonderful encouragement also.

    You said:

    "...for some reason I feel like it's missing the whole "this particular day of June" bit... but maybe he says that elsewhere?..."

    I think you mean that you're hearing this new post without a contextual reference, and I understand how that can be confusing, as per my paragraphs above.

    This new bit I've put up is starting in the middle of a scene which has been going on for about 10 minutes. We're picking things up mid-way, and as I tried to outline in my thread starter, the majority of this material is reprise.
    It only seemed that the motive (in the dramatic sense) for Dorian's prayer wasn't very well established in this small clip. But yeah, the preceding 10 minutes of his encounter with Lord Henry would do that quite well. Like you said it's mostly reprise.

    Either way, I hope you can convince some company in the Boulder CO area to stage this. xD
    There is the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. Therefore there must be a God. You either get this one or you don't - Kreeft & Tacelli
    The will to achieve is not sufficient. Some things should not be achieved. - Rimsky-Korsakov
    Musicians are just these guys that want to make music. Okay, they want to have a wonderful lifestyle, but the majority just want to make really great music. - Jon Anderson


  8. #8

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Hi Randy,

    whow, you have done a very good job with this. Very good music!

    I agree with Cerrabore, a really inventive orchestrations, moments of comedy, drama, romance and a pretty nice using from all the instruments.

    I like it!

    My best,

    Gunther
    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

    Listen to me, tuning my triangle http://www.box.net/shared/ae822u6r3i

  9. #9

    Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Cerrabore!--Thanks so much for your feedback. I'm very pleased that you enjoyed the recording so much! I look forward to having you hear more of the show as I continue to post more from the score. And thanks for letting me know you had a listen to the other numbers I've put up previously to this.

    And, Trent, I'm delighted you're looking forward to the next installment. This is something like a musical soap opera isn't it, getting a new chapter every once in awhile.

    You said:

    "...I never read the original book – how closely are you following it?..."

    My adaptation is more faithful than the many film versions. There's a reason it's a classic of literature, so I'm trusting the original material. The famous Wilde wit is especially in evidence with the character of Lord Henry, who is an exaggerated version of one side of Wilde's own personality, so most of his lines are virtually straight from the book.

    It's the plot which people have mucked around with too much, in my opinion, so I have that much as Wilde wrote it. The biggest divergence from the book is that there's a more developed love story between Dorian and a prostitute--That was suggested from developments in the latter part of the novel, I expanded on the idea.

    It really isn't accurate to say Wilde's purpose in the book was to moralize. It's a complicated subject, and he was contradictory in his statements about his purpose in writing the novel. But the themes I emphasize, and which Wilde was most concerned about are about the nature of Art--to what degree it does or doesn't influence us, and of how misled the quest for eternal youth is.

    And, by the way, the only "sin" of Dorian Gray which Wilde felt was unforgivable, making his final destruction a necessity, was that of murder. By the show's end, Dorian has been responsible for the deaths of four people, and we have the feeling there could have been more we didn't hear about.

    Thanks also for your positive notes about my singing on the demo. However, NOTE--Most of what I've posted and will be posting does NOT have me singing. I've done those versions ONLY for this Forum. They're not good enough for serious demoing. But it's very time-consuming to produce these extra vocal versions, so I really can't keep doing them. They Are confusing since I'm trying to do all the voices. I felt the need for some vocals in this particular section, because of its reprise nature etc--I wanted people to be given at least Some idea of what's going on during the show at this point.

    I tried for four months to enlist the talents of online singers to work up a good vocal demo of the whole show--But that didn't work out very well at all. Theoretically it should be possible, but I've discovered that the majority of people simply can't motivate themselves to do the work--with no pay, no definite deadlines etc. It's an experiment that failed. I do have one song to show for the effort--Mark Petruzzi singing "Every Picture Painted" (link on this thread header.)

    Hello again, Suspenlute! Boulder, Colorado hmmm?! Sounds good to me. I'm currently waiting to see if our local theatre group will place the show on their up-coming season. If not, I'll continue to look for a theatre willing to have the world premiere of something that could end up being very good for their reputation!

    The "prayer" section of Dorian is just a brief 4 bar bit which after this is heard quite a few times throughout the show. At this point, it's primarily a transition to the more important reprise of "Somewhere In-between." I believe in context of this whole opening chunk of the show, it couldn't be any longer. As I've said, there's a big difficulty in trying to show via the Forum how all this actually works together.

    Gunther--my faithful listener, thanks for your kind words on this newest post!

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)

  10. #10

    Wink Re: A SCENE-from my musical "Dorian Gray"

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser-

    Gunther--my faithful listener, thanks for your kind words on this newest post!

    (rbowser)
    Randy,

    I make music since I am on the world , and the most I ever learned how to play this or that was by listening, and I certainly never finish learning.

    My best,

    Gunther
    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

    Listen to me, tuning my triangle http://www.box.net/shared/ae822u6r3i

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