Music / Star Wars

Star Wars “is a very, very rich soundtrack”

It is a very, very rich soundtrack; there’s so much going on and it’s a very diverse soundtrack. And, of course, it sticks to kind of the Romantic orchestral tradition of the 19th century, what music historians call the Romantic Period of music. And that was used heavily throughout the twentieth century by Korngold and Max Steiner and Nicholas Rosa, who wrote Ivanhoe and Ben Hur and all those kinds of things. That’s really the kind of the musical tradition of Hollywood films, which had been gone for a long time and was out of fashion when Star Wars came out.

This film is very special for another reason, which we haven’t even talked about, Jimmy Mac, which is that most films, like maybe James Bond or films like that, they would bring together a group of musicians on a contractor basis. Y’know, they’d hire the first violinist, then maybe the first flutist, first trumpet player, and they would just contract out a bunch of people and put together a group. Star Wars is an historic film score because it is John Williams’ very first collaboration with the London Symphony Orchestra. This is really significant because the London Symphony Orchestra had this tremendous teamwork, camaraderie, ensemble feel to them, they knew how to play together, they’re very, very famous, one of the most famous orchestras in the world.

David W. Collins, Star Wars Oxygen, vol. 4 (26 February 2014) [http://www.rebelforceradio.com/shows/2015/10/1/star-wars-oxygen-vol-4]