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Topic: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

  1. #1

    Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    This is a score I composed for a dramatic production by my high school. From Anchorage Press Plays:

    "Kyushu, a Japanese "street orphan", is admitted into a Hiroshima hospital in the mid 1950's. When it is discovered that she's losing her eyesight, ths spectre is raised whether she is also a victim of "A-bomb illness". Despite her denial that she was in Hiroshima during the bomb blast, she is visited by a ghastly memory of the burned out city, the Cockroach Woman, and she resists all attempts by a Japanese physician and an American psychologist to help her. She falls more deeply into depression and hopelessness---until her chance meeting and eventual friendship with a young A-bomb patient named Sadako gives Kyushu the strength and desire to recover."

    I notated/sequenced the score in Geniesoft Overture 4, applying reverb (Sonitus-fx: "Large Hall") with Sonar 5. The two sample libraries used are Garritan Personal Orchestra and East/West Quantum Leap Ra. It's about split down the middle, with instruments from Ra tending to solo, and instruments from GPO tending to back up and color. However, there are plenty of moments that primarily feature the orchestra. I found that the two libraries blended together well and accentuated the Western approach to Eastern material. However, I tried to (at least, from the perspective of a child's play composer) capture some of the original Japanese culture in the music, not lampoon it. Ra instruments used include the koto, shamisen, shakuhachi, dizi, katana (pitched percussion), gong, taiko drums, and erhu and yali tambur (not Japanese instruments, but they had great sounds). I also incorporated "Zou-San" ("Mr. Elephant" or "The Elephant Song"), which is a traditional Japanese folk song, chosen by our director to represent the world of schoolchildren in Hiroshima prior to the atomic bombing. Cast members sang this song periodically throughout the play, but since I wasn't able to decently record them, I added some instrumental arrangements of the song to the album for listening.

    The album is available here. Click "Listen" to hear the whole album (27:36), or click on the individual tracks to listen to them and read the accompanying plot summaries.

  2. #2

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    Wow! Hmm.. Ahh.. Woah! Well... I can't really comment on the use of GPO samples right now because I was busy drifting away on this transportingly luscious soundscape but for now let's just call it awesome.

    With great respect,
    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

  3. #3

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    Hi, Cerrabore

    Fascinating project, and the tracks I've heard so far (I'm working my way down the list at your site) are wonderfully atmospheric, done with such delicacy and care. Great use of the ethnic instruments blending with the orchestral instruments. The recording itself is very successful too.

    This is really a treat--intriguing music done so well which is so different from anything I've heard here before.

    Congratulations on a wonderfully realized project.

    Randy B.

  4. #4

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    Great work, the RA library and the Sonar 5 reverb sound fantastic! Great to see another Overture 4 user as well. As Randy said, the tracks are wonderfully atmospheric, they must really help set up a definite mood for the play. It's great that you got the opportunity to do this, and succeeded so wonderfully!
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  5. #5

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    Thanks for your kind words, all. Sean, funny you should say that. I've recently had to convert to Mac and Finale for college, and am really bummed that the Mac version of Overture 4 is buggy and doesn't offer VST hosting. Hopefully they'll get that up and running soon... now, in Finale, to move a note, do I use the Repitch Tool, the Note Position Tool, the Notehead Position Tool, or the Note Mover Tool?

    Mm, simpler times.

  6. #6

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    I've been slowly checking out all the cuts on this over
    the last several days, Cerrabore.

    Excellent color work; and though I do not know the
    dramatic production, from the description of it -- perfectly
    suited, with a delicate hand that well expresses the
    Eastern setting. The recording and rendering -- first
    rate as well!

    With applause,


  7. #7

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    What a greatly relaxing soundscape; a perfect canvas for your play. Great work!

    "...Wiktor's a Jekyll-Hyde personality..." - Lycos Music

  8. #8

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    I thought the sound colors were great. It does seem to conjure up images of all sorts. I will have to go back and listen to more of it. There is a lot of music there and I was unable to listen to it all yet. Nice job.

  9. #9

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    What a great work you did!

    I like the combination with this two libraries, sounds excellent!

    But, first your compositions... . Bravo! They obtain this dramatic story very well!

    My best,

    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

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

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Wilton, NH

    Re: Paper Lanterns, Paper Cranes - Short Play Score

    Very well done. As the others have said, very atmospheric. You did a great job blending the sounds and music of the East with the West.
    Trent P. McDonald

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