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Topic: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

  1. #1

    A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Earlier today I put up the announcement in General Discussion that my musical, "Dorian-The Remarkable Mr. Gray" will get its premiere production in 2008! I am so stoked. I've been waiting for months for the board of directors at Pentacle Theatre here in Salem to make a decision. Finally they've settled on the next season, and "Dorian" will be the 3rd show on the 8 show season, running for 4 weeks in April. I'll direct the production, as I have for 9 other shows at this theatre.

    NOW---The next number from the show, following the waltz which is the last thing from the show I've posted.

    THAT masquerade scene turned out to be impossible to explain in the post, and there was some confusion about it, as you can see if you look at that previous thread.

    But THIS scene which follows will be even more confusing. There's simply no way I could explain everything in context of what's happening in this. It'll be mostly a chance for you to hear more music from the show, and get at least some vague idea of how it fits in to the production.

    Not counting the show's finale, this is the longest extended musical scene. It's 9:45-!

    In this thread's subject line I've called it "A Music Hall Scene" because that's the main concept of how this scene is to be done. It's as if the characters in this portion of the story are living un-real lives on an old English Music Hall Stage. Gas footlights, painted scenery et al.

    Here's a PDF file of the vocal score for "Into The Sun" in case you'd like to try to follow along. It has 5 vocal lines, though it's often solo material. If you keep continuously scrolling down, you may be able to follow during the MP3 playback.


    Dorian has fallen in love with an actress in a tawdry little theatre on the East Side. As he describes her to his friend Lord Henry, Sibyl, his love, appears and soon we're in the hovel where she lives with her mother and brother.

    Here's the MP3 at Box:


    It's a medley of songs as the characters interact, often as if they are on stage in a melodrama, as explained above.

    Even if what the action of the scene is never clear to you, I will at least enjoy knowing you've heard more of the show's music. This is unlike any of the numbers leading up to it.

    As with everything from the show I've posted, this is primarily done with GPO. These instrumental tracks will be the "virtual orchestra" for the live stage production coming up next year.

    Thanks for visiting!

    Randy B.

  2. #2

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Congrats on your premier!!!

    Anyhow, nice work as always on the tune. It's got that wonderful dramatic flair I 've come to lovingly expect from all your theatrical tunes. Great melodies and section building in the strings, shimmery and engaging keyboard bits (I enjoy those the most), etc. etc.

    Although I ask out of curiosity, what have you been using for drums? Sometimes I feel that the drumwork in your songs doesn't step up to the level of realism in the other parts (although if it's going to be staged anyway, I suppose we'll be getting live musician recordings for the low low price of $21.95 and all that in a year or two anyway ).

    Good luck.

    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: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    I must have missed many of your previous posts about the show, but on hearing this one I finally get the essence of what's it all about.
    I like the atmosphere, the short passages of this and that. It's expressing fun, enjoyment and all kinds of other moods.
    I think you have done a colossal work!

  4. #4

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Chris "Suspenlute" - I always enjoy having you visit my threads, thanks so much for your contribution on this one.

    I'm glad you enjoyed this episodic medley of a scene. I can hardly wait to work on numbers like this in the stage production - It's really such a work for theatre, the music alone is one thing, but it's all been written in support of the characters and story. That's where it comes to life.

    When the show is done next April, these are the tracks we'll use as the "virtual orchestra." Pentacle Theatre is an intimate space seating 310 people, and there's no adequate space for a band, and certainly not an orchestra. I've directed 6 other musicals there using tracks which I produced, and it's worked fantastically.

    Even if the drum sounds are a bit weak in these tracks, this is what I must go with for now. Since I first started working with the MIDI tracks for the show until now has taken me several years.

    I had one version completely done with hardware synths. Then I discovered GPO and made the tough decision to complete re-do the work I'd done. That process took me over a year, working pretty much non-stop. Early on as I arrived at "final" versions of tracks and they were mastered, I had been using my Korg sound module for the drums--And then I was commited to having that sound in the remaining tracks.

    It really wasn't probably until the last few months that I became aware that different sound samples for the drums would probably be an improvement--But that's one of the results of a large project taking so long. Things advance during the time it takes to do the project!--And we can't constantly be starting over.

    At this point, so many hundreds of hours have gone into the mastering--there's simply no way I could go back to re-record yet again, with a new drum set. The incredible amount of work done on the mastering alone would be impossible to re-create. It's not a matter of just doing MIDI tracks, pushing a button and considering it "rendered." The audio file mastering process has taken almost as long as doing the original MIDI tracks.

    And so it goes. It has to suffice. At the time I started, I didn't think I'd ever heard better drums, now I know there are other possibly better alternatives. AH well.

    But a comfort comes from knowing that in the live theatre, when the actors are taking most of the focus, not one out of the thousands who see the show are likely to come up to me and say, "Pretty good, but boy those drums...!" lol.

    Sunbird! - I'm so glad you like this. It's really not typical of the show--well, no single number from the score is probably "typical" of the show, but this scene is probably less typical than others. This depicts a self deluded family who live life as if it's a two dimensional melodrama--and the passages are homages to old fashioned 19th Century popular music because of that concept. The sweetest passages are for the overly sentimental mother, and her equally romantic daughter, the melodramatic passages are for the surly son--and so forth.

    I get self conscious about posting so much from my show, thinking I could be fairly swamping the Forum with it--Which is silly, there's so much put up here, there's no way anyone could keep track of it all. Still, I'm surprised you haven't seen my other posts from "Dorian."

    Here's the link to the last post from the show I put up before this. It's a convoluted thread, because it was virtually impossible to explain what the piece was. In brief--it's a strange waltz, in a deceptively happy, carnival-like mood--on stage we'll see that beneath that aural surface, there's a strange and troubling energy afoot. It's the last number previous to this current one.


    Thanks much everyone for being here!

    Randy B.
    Last edited by rbowser-; 07-10-2007 at 09:42 AM. Reason: typos

  5. #5

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Yet another great performance, Randy!

    One thing that strikes me while listening, is the continuity throughout all your arrangements. You've certainly managed to carry the theme/style nicely with each song, yet not becoming repetitive.

    In this latest submission there's some really nice harmonic shifts at around 4:08!

    Terrific !


  6. #6

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Nice, Randy, very nice!

    And: Congrats on your premier!!!

    My Best

    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

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

  7. #7

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Boy Randy, you sure have a flair for this kind of music. It just sounds great. I know you have spent alot of time and this, and it really has paid off. You must be doing hand-springs now after finally getting 'DORIAN' scheduled. Great going.

  8. #8

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Jeff--Great to see you here. Thanks much for your comments! - This one is really too much to take in this way, on the Forum like this, but I like the idea of going ahead and eventually having posted all the numbers. It's so fun to play them for you guys, even when I know they're being heard out of context.

    Thank ye, Gunther!

    Jay, you're right, I'm pretty pleased indeed. Of course I've just taken on a HUge project, to stage this gigantic show, but I'll love every minute of it. Thanks for your kind remarks!

    Randy B.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Wilton, NH

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    Very well done. I don’t think I was quite able to synch up the words and music, but I did take a quick read through and a couple of listens and thoroughly enjoyed it. Sounds like it will be a very interesting play.
    Trent P. McDonald

  10. #10

    Re: A Music Hall Scene - from my musical "Dorian"

    It's just right for the theatre! You obviously know what you're doing here. I think it'll sound great with people moving around on stage and singing, and no one expects a 300-seat theatre to provide an orchestra for them. It has a "crowd pleaser" aspect to it so I think you'll get some well-deserved applause from a happy audience!
    Vista / Sonar Home Studio 6 / GPO 2d edition / Melodyne Uno 1.8

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