Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Charles Gerhardt & Npo|
Citizen Kane: Herrmann Film Scores
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks
Similarly Requested CDs
Great music, superb recording, and a couple of added treats
David B. Spalding | Chromejob-dot-com | 06/11/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I treasured several of these Gerhardt/NPO film score releases on cassette as a film-fan teen, and this CD is no different. Gerhardt's interpretations of these selections (with Herrmann present at the sessions) are stunning, true to the original compositions, with all the passion and grandeur that they deserve without having to conform to a) screen timing, and b) the limitations of monaural optical film soundtrack methods of the time. As another reviewer pointed out, Herrmann is known for his great Hitchcock film scores, but his other work was no less marvelous. (Typical example, his score for THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, making exceptional use of piano, deep bass brass and the unusual but appropriate Theremin.)
An intriguing footnote.... For CITIZEN KANE's portrayal of Susan Alexander's disastrous opera debut, Herrmann needed a grand opera excerpt that could convey the pandemonium, confusion, and Wagnerian excess of an opera, and showcase the soprano as having a legitimate voice, but one incapable of matching a smothering orchestra arrangement. No such selection from grand opera sufficed, so Herrmann composed his own. His fictitious SALAMMBO recitative and aria astutely illustrate in abstract, subtextual musical syntax the anguish that Alexander felt participating in Kane's delusion that she would be a great opera star. In fact, the libretto is derived from Racine's "Phedre," in which the heroine begs her lover to kill her and release her from shame. For the film, the light lyric soprano Herrmann used was appropriately overwhelmed by the thunderous arrangement. For this June, 1974, recording, a truly capable, genuine opera star (a then up-and-coming pro named Kiri Te Kanawa ... yes you read that correctly, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa) was recruited. She matches the orchestra, and you can hear SALAMMBO as it was written by Herrman. It's the jewel of this recording.
Finally, that these Gerhardt/NPO recordings are available on CD with Dolby Surround encoding is NO gimmick. (This info is missing from the Product Details, but the large cover image indicates the encoding.) These analog recordings sound FABULOUS with a receiver in Dolby Surround, Pro Logic, or Pro Logic II Music decoding. (I don't recommend you use "movie" settings, as the music isn't really meant to be channeled to Left, Right, and Center.) In straight stereo, or Surround, you can hear Herrman's music as clear as if you were in the concert hall. This CD is a must-have for Herrmann fans, and home theatre aficionados."