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View Poll Results: Choose one or more whom you like

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  • Richard Addinsell

    4 15.38%
  • John Addison

    2 7.69%
  • William Alwyn

    6 23.08%
  • Malcolm Arnold

    7 26.92%
  • Richard Rodney Bennett

    5 19.23%
  • Stanley Black

    1 3.85%
  • Carl Davis

    2 7.69%
  • Benjamin Frankel

    2 7.69%
  • Ron Goodwin

    4 15.38%
  • Clifton Parker

    0 0%
  • Mischa Spoliansky

    3 11.54%
  • other

    11 42.31%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: Do you have any favourite British film composers?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Cool Do you have any favourite British film composers?

    British films, especially from the 1950s, had many of their scores written by U.K. composers who've had careers in both the concert world and the film industry.
    The likes of Alwyn, Arnold and Frankel vacillated between commissions for film productions and the concert hall.

    Select your favorite British composers, if any, in the multiple choice above.

    Please be aware that the entries are not comprehensive. I've limited this poll to those names who've had at least 35 film scores to their credit and have had compilation albums/re-recordings of their film scores surface on labels such as Chandos, Naxos or CPO, etc.

    Higher profile names such as Ralph Vaughan Williams and William Walton have been intentionally omitted because they scored about a dozen films each (significantly less than 35). While John Barry had scored around 95 titles, he is also absent from the poll because Barry is much more the tunesmith than the symphonist.

    My favourites are 1) Richard Rodney Bennett, 2) Benjamin Frankel & 3) Malcolm Arnold. I voted for "other" as well because I think the soundtracks by John Scott are consistently orchestral in conception and Scott deserves a special mention for this even though he doesn't have a body of "absolute" music (not any that I'm aware of, anyway).

    While Michael Nyman could be a satisfactory "other" for some TC members, guys such as George Fenton or Stephen Warbeck, for example, I consider to be ineligible overall since either one doesn't have a "dual" career (as such) and neither impresses as being a contemporary composer like a James MacMillan or a George Benjamin or Mark-Anthony Turnage...

  2. #2
    MacLeod
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    Difficult to choose, since few of them composed scores which are particularly memorable - only Ron Goodwin's spring to mind. It could be argued that if you remember the score, it's overwhelmed the movie: a good score should work at the time of watching the movie, but not afterwards. I wouldn't agree.

    On the grounds that he composed the score to The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp I'd nominate Allan Gray, http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0336434/#Composer but he doesn't fit the rules (no compliations).

    So, I'll plump for Malcolm Arnold

    A special mention surely to Muir Mathieson. He composed little, but was seen on many film credits as the musical director.

    http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0558826/#Composer

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    I wouldn't call Nyman specifically a "film composer" because a lot of the time (particularly in his music for Greenaway films) the music was written without him knowing that it was to become a film score. Most of his music at the time it was being composed was never intended to be for film even though it later became music for the film BUT since he is most famous for the music that he wrote which was later used as film scores I would vote for him as an "other" because of all the British film composers and composers whose music has had a strong association with films he is my favourite.


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  5. #4
    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacLeod View Post
    Difficult to choose, since few of them composed scores which are particularly memorable - only Ron Goodwin's spring to mind. It could be argued that if you remember the score, it's overwhelmed the movie: a good score should work at the time of watching the movie, but not afterwards. I wouldn't agree.
    That's interesting you consider some of Goodwin's scores as the most memorable.

    Myself, I'm not a fan of Goodwin. Whether the picture be VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED or 1966's THE TRAP, a Goodwin soundtrack typically does not resonate with me. Perhaps this is because I prefer more idiosyncratic musical traits, and Goodwin comes across to me as quite conventional as a result.

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    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacLeod View Post
    On the grounds that he composed the score to The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp I'd nominate Allan Gray, but he doesn't fit the rules (no compliations).
    Mr. Gray could be another "other".

    Gray did between 45 and 50 films, so he can join this party if a label such as Chandos would ever re-record suites of his scores...
    Last edited by Prodromides; Aug-11-2012 at 05:42.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by MacLeod View Post
    A special mention surely to Muir Mathieson. He composed little, but was seen on many film credits as the musical director.
    Yes, certainly a special mention for Muir Mathieson (who was also credited as conductor "Doc" Mathieson on a number of Ealing productions)...

  8. #7
    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by MacLeod View Post
    So, I'll plump for Malcolm Arnold
    Good - that makes two of us.

    1958 was a sort of banner year for Malcolm Arnold. After winning an Academy Award for THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI, Arnold received increases in film scoring assignments and vinyl soundtrack LPs of his soundtracks became a little more frequent:





    ... and here's another Fox production ...





    [I read that Mr. Arnold had used his Oscar statue as a door-stopper! ]
    Last edited by Prodromides; Aug-11-2012 at 06:03.

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  10. #8
    Senior Member Prodromides's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ComposerOfAvantGarde View Post
    I wouldn't call Nyman specifically a "film composer" because a lot of the time (particularly in his music for Greenaway films) the music was written without him knowing that it was to become a film score ... BUT since he is most famous for the music that he wrote which was later used as film scores I would vote for him as an "other" ...
    Precisely.

    Nyman has written films scores, though, for items such as GATTACA.

    Nyman's music's attachment to the films of Peter Greenaway is such that (from a soundtrack collector's perspective) this qualifies Greenaway and Nyman as cinematic collaborators, not unlike the more celebrated and mainstream collaborations of Hitchcock & Herrmann or David Lean & Maurice Jarre, etc.
    Last edited by Prodromides; Aug-11-2012 at 06:31.

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  12. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prodromides View Post
    That's interesting you consider some of Goodwin's scores as the most memorable.
    Well, I wouldn't take 'memorable' to mean anything more than 'I can remember it'! The themes from 633 Squadron and Battle of Britain are the ones I had in mind, the former often played on the radio when I was a child, and the latter which I've seen so many times and I compare and contrast with the snatch of Walton which occurs near the end.

    I'm trying to think of great films where the score is not 'memorable', but where I can recall that it added to my enjoyment of the film - but I can only bring American movies to mind, like Silence of the Lambs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prodromides View Post
    Precisely.

    Nyman has written films scores, though, for items such as GATTACA.

    Nyman's music's attachment to the films of Peter Greenaway is such that (from a soundtrack collector's perspective) this qualifies Greenaway and Nyman as cinematic collaborators, not unlike the more celebrated and mainstream collaborations of Hitchcock & Herrmann or David Lean & Maurice Jarre, etc.
    I don't like to think of Nyman as mainly a "film composer" though because of all the other works he has written such as the string quartets, operas, concerti, MGV, works for his band (And Do They Do, After Extra Time, In Re Don Giovanni, Water Dances etc.) and I think that it's mainly these works and his music in the Peter Greenaway films that really show Nyman at his best. Those works for the Michael Nyman band were originally intended to be for concert performance anyway (apart from And Do They Do which was written to accompany a dance). I don't think his film scores that he wrote specifically as film scores say much about his style.

  14. #11
    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    Alan Rawsthorne wrote some good stuff for the silver screen, especially his music for The Cruel Sea and Uncle Silas.

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  16. #12
    Senior Member Mesa's Avatar
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    Replace the word 'Zoidberg' with 'Barry'.


    A mere tunesmith? Do you also consider Henry Mancini a tunesmith?
    You're a crazy, penniless lobster doctor. No combination of you should be a comedian.

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    Senior Member Sieglinde's Avatar
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    Murray Gold not on the list? The man who composed this haunting piece and used a countertenor?
    The enemy is at Honno-ji!

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    you left off Patrick Doyle

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    Senior Member clavichorder's Avatar
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    I already know Alwyn to be a fantastic composer of non-cinematic music. Arnold as well.
    Last edited by clavichorder; Sep-12-2012 at 07:23.

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