Schindler's List: Film Music of John Williams[CD]
In honor of the Maestro's 83rd birthday (Feb. 8, 2015), BuySoundtrax Records proudly presents this collection of new recordings, in which some of John Williams' most thoughtful orchestral film compositions are distilled into the intimacy of the instrumental duet. These tracks comprise Williams' own arrangements as well as those of pianist Dan Redfeld, who is joined by Elizabeth Hedman (violin), David Washburn (trumpet), Donald Foster (clarinet), and Karen Hogle Brown (voice) in articulately presenting these themes with deference to their composer and with the heartfelt artistry of each performer. Singular among virtually all Hollywood motion picture composers, John Williams has established a distinguished reputation in contemporary American music over a career that has thus far continued for six decades. It's a sign of the ongoing flexibility of Williams' music and his ongoing association with the concert hall and with modern classical music that many of his film works are being translated into new arrangements for performance by a variety of small ensembles. It was actually the composer himself who first began to reshape the symphonic splendor of his movie music into the austere environment of the chamber hall. For SCHINDLER'S LIST: THE FILM MUSIC OF JOHN WILLIAMS, the composer's own arrangements were used for the new recordings and where Williams hadn't published his own arrangements, Dan made his own arrangements, relying on his understanding of Williams' compositional style from having studied and played them over many years. "John is my favorite composer, " Redfeld said. "In college, I had the good fortune to hang around him and watch him work in Boston, and I know his material." The spotlight on these selections is intended to be on the soloists: violin, clarinet, trumpet, voice. As a bonus track, SCHINDLER'S LIST: THE FILM MUSIC OF JOHN WILLIAMS includes Redfeld's arrangement of "Where Dreams Are Born, " a vocalise for soprano and orchestra from the soundtrack to Spielberg's wistful science fiction drama, A.I. ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (2001). Without a published arrangement of the piece, Redfeld transcribed the music by hand from the film soundtrack. "I used John's vocal notes as they were written, " he said, "and I came up with the arrangement for the piano part."
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