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Topic: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

  1. #1

    Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    The Black Cat Ballet
    (click title for MP3 - script PDF link below)

    Even though some people have said they would "much rather" see a video or live performance of my stage musical, "Dorian-The Remarkable Mister Gray," others have said they're enjoying just hearing the music - as incomplete an experience as it is.

    It's impossible to present visuals with these postings, since the show's first production doesn't go on until April of this coming year.

    So, I'm moving on with the postings - FINALLY getting to the Act One Finale. It's taken me NINE MONTHS to post only half of the show's music! Maybe I should step things up a bit?! What do you think--?

    As usual, there's far too much going on in this scene for me to adequately describe it. This time, I've made a PDF of the script for this scene. I encourage you to take a look to get a better idea of how this music is used. It's a jam-packed 4 pages - found here:

    This is largely a dance number, and takes place in a seedy tavern on the docks in London. The place is a front for a brothel and opium den.

    Enticed by his friend Henry, Dorian comes to this seething den of iniquity and receives his baptism into the wildest hedonism of his young life.

    He's offered Opium and other intoxicants, and due to his newly acquired immortality, finds himself insatiable and able to take in more mind altering substances than anyone else.

    After the vigorous dance number, the rough crowd of sailors and prostitutes eventually drops to the floor in exhaustion, leaving only Dorian standing. He's completely manic and almost insane with sensation. The final words of the Act are Dorian when he demands "More! Bring me More!
    Some of you will recognize the opening transition music as the waltz from the Masquerade scene, "Fantastic Eyes." This plays as the scenery comes into place and the Chorus slowly appears.

    There are interpolations of lines from prostitutes and sailors, then at 0:54, the Chorus greets Dorian in a transition section.

    The number itself starts at 1:08. Some sections are with lyrics, some are purely dance.

    At 2:20 there is a softer, more exotic section as Dorian is offered the Opium pipe, other substances, as well as the promise of wild sexual favors.

    This is followed by a segment where Dorian's consciousness is shifting. He briefly recalls his words from early in the show when he was wishing there was a dimension to enter where black and white are replaced with more subtle shades of gray.

    At 3:24, a bullwhip brandishing sailor does a dance solo.

    By 4:40, the inhabitants of the tavern have all passed out, and Dorian is crying out to the Universe for MORE!
    As with the entire sound track for the show, GPO is the primary sound source. It's been supplemented with a Korg X5DR module, a CZ 1000, and various Sound Fonts.

    Randy B.

  2. #2

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Brilliant work, as usual. You continue to set a high standard. Just be warned, we'll come down hard on you if you ever post any "clinkers" hehe.

    --gary shannon
    --gary shannon
    Spooks! - The Movie

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Penfield (Rochester), NY

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray


    An usual, top quality workmanship. It certainly fits the scene that you have portrayed.

    The "Black Cat Ballet" arrived just in time to play for our black cat named "Shakespeare". Be informed that he gave the ballet his approval

    Gary & Shakespeare


  4. #4
    Senior Member valhalx's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Wine Country, Colorado

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Great work here Randy. Very enjoyable. I certainly hope this makes it to the stage some day.

    Never look at the trombones. It only encourages them. Richard Strauss

    My Website
    Beethoven's Eroica
    Antonio Salieri
    The History of Studebaker

  5. #5

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray



    Sorry, I mean Randy,

    I will be honest and say I do read the info you give out with all of these posts, but I don't pay a lot of attention to it. I just kick back and listen to the music. It's funny because I like lots of dissonance in my music and you do not seem to use much, yet I always enjoy each of these installments. Ever since you sang in the one part, I have seen such a huge influence from Elfman that it should be understandable why I got confused.

    With my current schedule, if you posted much quicker, I may not get the chance to hear all of the posts, so I like your current progress. About 1 or 2 a week works for me, but you do as you feel comfortable. I do hope that you will put these together somewhere when you are finished so we can revisit them easily.

    Great job


  6. #6

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Holy cow -- hookahs, hookers, whips, mushrooms;
    what a leader into act two... lol! Positively
    surreal, and the music reflects it well...
    tumbling in and out of control in a kaleidoscopic
    thematic revel.

    What a ride!



  7. #7
    Senior Member fastlane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Shelton, Washington State

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Decadence, hedonism and S&M.

    Boy, this is going to be a great show.

    I'll check out the pdf.


  8. #8

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Thank you, gentlemen, for visiting and leaving your calling cards! (Victorian etiquette reference)

    Gary "Fiziwig" - "...we'll come down hard on you if you ever post any "clinkers" hehe..." I'll endeavor not to post clinkers! That would be distressing in connection with my "Dorian" posts at any rate, because the complete "virtual orchestra" is "in the can" - this is what we'll using for the up-coming production and times doesn't permit for re-workings. - I really appreciate your very kind words, Gary.

    BY the way, Gary - When you said on my last thread that you'll make it up for the show, I hadn't noticed before that you are indeed Super close, in Eugene. That's where I went to school, South Eugene High School and then the U of O. I love Eugene - hippest town in Oregon.

    Gary Bric!--Please tell your cat Shakespeare that I'm pleased my Black Cat inspired ballet meets with his approval. And thank you for yours also!

    Bill "valhalx" - This might be the first "Dorian" piece you've heard? - I'm really glad you had a listen and that you enjoy it. The show Will be on stage - first production is coming up April, 2008, here in Salem, Oregon! That's just the first step in what I hope will be a long, successful life for the piece.

    Ron "Rolifer" - Thanks for yet again tuning in. I do want to step up the postings, otherwise, it'll be ANOther 9 months before I've worked through Act Two! I'll try not to post so fast that you can't keep up though.

    Elfman - Well, as I said before, I certainly don't mind the comparison to someone so successful! And at the same time, I scratch my head over the comparison, not knowing until you brought it up that he was an influence. He wasn't a conscious influence, but when I stretch my head around the idea, I Guess I get at least a hint of what you're talking about. Fine with me!

    Interesting comment you made about dissonance and the relative lack of it in these pieces. You're right - My orientation in music I would have to say is primarily melody driven, and in a fairly traditional tonal way. I may change keys and time signatures at the drop of a hat--Ok, I Do! - but my pop/rock sensibilities are there at the foundations of everything I do, I happily admit.

    hehe--you cracked me up David "Et Lux" with "hookahs and hookers." I think I'll use that phrase when we rehearse the show. "On stage for the Hookahs and Hookers number!"

    Glad you found it a wild ride. Maybe the guys in the audience who were dragged to the theatre by their wives/girlfriends (happens all the time - theatre is just not the first entertainment choice for most guys)--maybe they'll be more inclined to return for Act Two, with hopes of seeing more of those wild women on stage!

    (--reminds me though - I hope we can keep the show an age-restricted event. I don't want to tame things down to a "G" or "PG" level - Kids wouldn't get into this anyway, may as well make it clear it's intended as an adult show--Hummm, topless Victorians?--Maaaaaybe!)

    Phil "Fastlane" - yeeeeeah man, hedonism, decadence, S&M - this is a regular Disney Special.

    The novel is noted for the way the specifics of Dorian's "sins" are largely only hinted at. The reader can fill in-between the lines to imagine more exactly what all he gets into. Trips to East End Opium dens are mentioned, and those references were the starting point for this scene. So "The Black Cat Ballet" is only based on suggestions in the book, and in that sense it's un-like most of the show which is a more faithful adaptation.

    Look out, we take another trip to this danger-filled tavern in Act Two.

    Thank you all!

    Randy B.

  9. #9

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Randy--great work as usual. I second the Elfman comments--though yours changes textures and styles far more often. Very unique score in your moving between 'pop' and 'classical' styles: seems like a pop song flashes before you for a moment only to transform rapidly (and most importantly--seamlessly) to a classical or broadway style.

    I was just thinking you could probably get several more works out of this when it is completed:
    (1) The songs as a separate piece
    (2) Orchestral piece--The 'Dorian' Suite
    (3) Perhaps a concerto of some sort--transcribing voice to a different instrument

    Thanks for posting,

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

    Re: Act One Finale - Dorian Gray

    Hi Randy. I really liked your latest installment. Even through the , drugs and rock and roll I heard some familiar themes now and again. Quite a big ending to the first movement.
    Trent P. McDonald

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