All posts under Erich Wolfgang Korngold

50 Favorite Film Scores, Part 4: #20–11


If you want to refresh your memory of earlier entries in the list, check out the past few posts—Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. We’re coming into the home stretch but not just yet. Herewith are the next batch of some of my favorite scores… 20. THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR (1947) [audio:ghostandmrsmuir.mp3] Bernard Herrmann goes romantic. The fantastical story of a young widow in love with a dead sea captain features arguably Herrmann’s most ravishing work (and Herrmann’s personal favorite). The score beautifully captures the crashing waves and…

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9 Oscar-Winning Scores Still To Be Released

Thoroughly Modern Millie

You’d think there be a month that went by that I didn’t think about the Oscars. Alas, I’m just that shallow. Even though an Academy Award is no indication of quality, the Oscars are how I taught myself about the history of film music and I don’t like holes in my Oscar collection. Yet after 35+ years of burdening myself with such a foolish obsession, my collection is still minus too many excellent Oscar scores. I doubt the collection will ever be complete when it comes to nominated scores. There…

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CD Review: Captain Blood – Classic Film Scores for Errol Flynn

Captain Blood

Out of the numerous albums in Charles Gerhardt’s Classic Film Scores series, CAPTAIN BLOOD–CLASSIC FILM SCORES FOR ERROL FLYNN, released in 1975, was the final album devoted to a particular star. While some of the scores on the album are familiar from other entires in the series, Gerhardt and the New Philharmonic Orchestra once again bring this great Golden Age film music stunningly to life. Three of Flynn’s most famous films were featured on Gerhardt’s first album in the series, THE SEA HAWK, devoted to the music of Erich Wolfgang Korngold….

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CD Review: The Sea Hawk – The Classic Film Scores of Erich Wolfgang Korngold


The Classic Film Scores recordings of Charles Gerhardt from the 1970s were an essential part of my film music education, unearthing a whole new world of Golden Age film music for my still-developing love. Gerhardt recorded a total of 14 albums in the series, but the CDs were long out of print until a couple of years ago when ArkivMusic offered them through their CD-R program. Now Sony Masterworks has dug into the vaults and reissued six of these Golden Age gems for a new generation of film music fans to…

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Anthony Adverse

Anthony Adverse

Based on Hervey Allen’s bestselling epic novel of historical romance in the Napoleonic era, ANTHONY ADVERSE emerged as one of the biggest hits of 1936 and was nominated for six Oscars, winning four, including the first-ever Best Supporting Actress (Gale Sondergaard). Fredric March stars as the title hero and the film follows his adventures from orphan to adulthood, including his love for the beautiful Angela (Olivia de Havilland). The larger-than-life situations and numerous locales were ripe for the Warner Bros. treatment and its celebrated musical star, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, was…

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The Hollywood Concerto


Film music and the concert hall have always forged a strained relationship. “Classical” (for lack of a better term) composers seldom write for film—Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Copland, Corigliano, Glass and Muhly are a few exceptions. And unless it is programmed as part of a pops concert, film music rarely crosses over into the concert world. That’s why, browsing through the bins in the Classical section of Tower Records at Lincoln Center one day in 1994, I was shocked to hear what I thought was film music soaring from the overhead speakers….

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They Walk Alike, They Talk Alike


My recent review of Tribute Film Classic’s magnificent new recording of Erich Wolfgang Korngold’s THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER sparked my interest in seeing the film for the first time. As I unfamiliar with Mark Twain’s original novel as well, this was a case where I saw the film strictly for the music. THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER is certainly no ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD but there is enough sword action to appease swashbuckling fans. Billy and Bobby Mauch give convincing portrayals of the title characters, and Errol Flynn is…

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CD Review: The Prince and the Pauper


With its latest release, Tribute Film Classics serves up a musical treasure fit for a king–Erich Wolfgang Korngold’s complete score for THE PRINCE AND THE PAUPER (1937). When Tribute Film Classics emerged as a new label in 2007, their mission was to “to record deserved scores in complete renditions–including music that may have been omitted or edited in the final film–that have been either ignored or survive in less than pristine condition.” That their releases have been greeted with praise should come as no surprise. After all, score reconstructionist John…

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Welcome to Sherwood, My Lady!

The Adventures of Robin Hood

I first encountered Erich Wolfgang Korngold’s Oscar-winning music for THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD in a 3-LP box set dedicated to 50 years of Warner Bros. films. The set included such various treasures as musicals numbers from YANKEE DOODLE DANDY and CAMELOT, and scenes from CASABLANCA and NOW, VOYAGER. But it was Korngold’s music that made the biggest impression on me. ROBIN HOOD is the quintessential Errol Flynn swashbuckler.  Pitch-perfect casting begins with Flynn as the lord who robs from the rich and gives to the poor, Olivia de Havilland as the…

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Golden Age Film Music: Colorful, Ornate and Gaudy?


Mark Swed’s Los Angeles Times review of the opening concert of the Pacific Symphony’s American Composers Festival made for some angry comments left by film score fans. However, I found his opening remarks particularly vivid: Hollywood’s “Golden Age” was, of course, black and white.  What gave the pre-World War II talkies their “color” was their ornate, even gaudy, music. My first exposure of Golden Age film music came from the RCA compilations recorded by Charles Gerhardt and the National Philharmonic Orchestra in the 1970s. Here was music with sweep and…

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