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Topic: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

  1. #1

    4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Underscoring from "Dorian
    (click title for MP3)

    Four "incidental music cues" from my original stage musical, "Dorian-The Remarkable Mister Gray," based on Oscar Wilde's Gothic Horror novel, "The Picture of Dorian Gray."
    Dorian Gray blackmails his old friend, Alan Campbell, to dissolve the corpse of Basil Hallward which is locked in Dorian's upstairs attic along with the possessed and demonic looking portrait of Dorian.

    After the chemist does the grisly deed, Dorian indulges in his favorite private ritual - comparing his eternally youthful face with the monster's in the painting - the image of what Dorian would really look like if nature took its natural course.

    But while lost in his grotesque reverie, the faces of Dorian's victims coming swimming to the surface of the painting. The faces of Sibyl Vane, the girl who killed herself in despair because of Dorian's cruel rejection, and Basil Hallward, the hapless painter of the portrait, undulate on the canvas in screaming, accusatory grimaces. Overcome with terror, Dorian flees his haunted attic.
    Following "A Most Amusing Man" is a dialogue scene between Dorian and Alan. There are three short pieces of underscoring for that scene. Then "The Ritual" is the underscoring for the wordless scene between Dorian and his painting. For this posting, I put together a montage of all 4 short segments.
    1) The Fight - Alan and Dorian break into a fist fight. The music underscoring the struggle is based on the main theme from "The Black Cat Ballet" which ended Act One. - This is a good reminder of how my original concept for the show was for it to be a rock opera - an idea soon abandoned as I continued work on the score. 32 seconds long. NOTE--It's LOUD, adjust volume control accordingly.

    2) The Whistling Sailor at 0:33- Another piece of underscoring based on the moment from "The Black Cat Ballet" when Alan was seen leaving the Black Cat tavern with a seemingly sado-masochistic sailor. It's this indiscretion which becomes Dorian's blackmailing leverage in the present scene. 22 seconds long.

    3) Scene Change music at 0:55- Alan is left alone. Dorian is heard playing the piano off stage. After warming up with a run through the Dorian Mode (an irresistible musical in-joke) he plays a reduced version of "Somewhere In-between," Dorian's major song in Act One. 45 seconds long.

    4) The Ritual at 1:40- Interweaving themes previously established in the score, this is the music playing during Dorian's bizarre ritual as he gazes into a hand mirror and gloats over the contrast between his appearance and the monster in the painting. 1 min 50 seconds long.

    Primarily recorded using GPO.

    The photo above is of Hurd Hatfield and his painting from the classic film version of "The Picture of Dorian Gray." The fight illustration is from the 19th Century.

    Randy B.

  2. #2

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Neat little cues. They fit the mood nicely. They have that wonderful "Danny Elfmann" feel to them.
    --gary shannon
    Spooks! - The Movie

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

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"


    I was flipping through postings and what pops up...your lastest posting. These are really neat incident cues that you have up here. And the explainations are key to placing them into the right context, especially since I am not intimately familiar with the story of Dorian. The use of GPO is always first rate! Thanks for sharing this with us.



  4. #4
    Senior Member rpearl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Effective at getting/setting the mood - that's what a cue is for, yes? If so, success. As always, great work!
    Ron Pearl





  5. #5

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Thank you, Garys "Fiziwig" and "Bric," and Ron. Appreciate your replies very much.

    I've enjoyed writing underscorings and incidental music for a very long time, and have written such music for quite a few non-musical plays.

    Danny Elfman again! Oh my - Maybe I need to play some videos and pay more attention, - I still have a hard time hearing his influence, but sure don't mind the fun reference!

    I hope you all come back when I soon post the next number which is one of the most Important songs in the whole show.

    Thanks again!

    Randy B.

  6. #6

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"


    Neat and precise. I actually read all the stuff this time before listening and then again during the 2nd time thru.

    I see a little of Elfman in the first cue, but just you in the others. I asked you this elsewhere but you forgot to answer, Did you compose these before Elfman became famous?

    I mean which came first? Maybe Elfman got his inspiration from you!!!

    Regardless, this is another fine addition to your Dorian postings.

    Great night!!!


  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Toronto, Canada

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Great theatre music, Randy. I'm not sure about all this talk about Elfman - he has something to do with 'The Simpsons', doesn't he ? Here and there in the various postings you've made, I thought there may be some hints of Sondheim. However, it mainly comes across as good theatre music, meaning that the dramatic requirement is really the chief influence - including the time and place and style of the story.

    Very well done, and good luck with the production.

    Best Regards,


  8. #8
    Senior Member Leaf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Dallas, TX

    Smile Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    These are great Randy. The orchestration sounds as amazing as your previous postings, and the piano solo (along with the flutes and brass that preceded it) are just outstanding! Thoroughly enjoying listening to these.


  9. #9

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Having just recently re-read the book, I find something indescribably awesome about having Dorian gayly playing the piano downstairs as Alan dissolves Basil's body. Although it sounds like there's someone else in the room with a cello.

    As always, I really like these tunes... but "The Ritual" is really in a class of its own, genuinely spinetingling and shiver-inducing with a great relation to what's going to happen onstage.

    This thing is looking better and better with the more you post.

    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

  10. #10

    Re: 4 incidental music cues from "Dorian"

    Nicely done Randy ... as always

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