Citizen Kane

50 Favorite Film Scores, Part 1: #50–41

In the countdown to my 50th birthday on the 19th, in addition to foolishly choosing nine of my favorite film composers, I decided to tackle an even more daunting task—choose 50 of my favorite scores. Little did I know when I began this listening project back in June that it would prove to be so… More


The Thrill of the Hunt

I’ve never participated in a fox hunt for a couple of reasons–1) It’s now banned almost everywhere, 2) I’m afraid of horses, and 3) it requires me to be outdoors. Though I’m fully aware of the animal cruelty issues, there’s still something appealing about the time-honored tradition of a good old-fashioned hunt. Plus, I think… More

Altered States

To Trip the Score Fantastic

Future Pulitzer Prize-winner John Corigliano burst onto the film music scene in 1980 with Ken Russell’s trippy film, ALTERED STATES. Based on Paddy Chayefsky’s novel, William Hurt stars as a college professor researching different states of consciousness through mind-altering drugs, which cause disturbing physical changes that indicate evolutionary regression. As whacked out as any of Russell’s other films,… More


CD Review: Revolution

In December 2007, I came across a copy of John Corigliano‘s score for REVOLUTION. The 1985 film starring Al Pacino and Nastassja Kinski during the Revolutionary War was one of the most notorious flops in film history. But I had never seen the movie nor heard a note of Corigliano’s score. What I heard was… More


CD Review: Mr. Tambourine Man/Three Hallucinations

The relationship between Hollywood and the concert hall has always been strained at best. But for me, film music and classical music have always existed peacefully side by side. As a clarinet performance major in college, I loved studying clarinet works by such Hollywood legends as Alex North and Miklos Rozsa because of their film… More


War Is Hell

“You could hear the city a mile off…New York goin’ crazy.” But New York wasn’t the only city going crazy when Revolution opened in limited release on Christmas Day, 1985.