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A History of Music in Film  

Survey the development of the film score for motion pictures from its earliest inception through today. Selected examples throughout its history will be demonstrated in class through film clips and interviews with composers and film-makers. Students will learn the importance of the film score and how it functions to support the aesthetic and narrative elements of the story. During the class we will discuss functions of film scoring in various historical contexts, gain familiarity with music and sound terminology as they are applied to filmmaking, explore the ways in which film music relates to narrative storytelling, identify signature styles of notable composers, and compare and contrast film music styles in different eras. Week 1: overview of 12 main functions of film music and early days (silent film era up to first talkies) Week 2: overview of production process and discussion of “Golden Age” composers (Max Steiner, Alfred Newman, Erich Korngold, Franz Waxman, David Raksin, etc.) Week 3: advent of television and the end of the Golden Age (Bernard Herrmann and Alfred Hitchcock) Week 4: 1960s-80s and new directions in scoring (Jerry Goldsmith, Ennio Morricone, Maurice Jarre, etc.) Week 5: Famous Collaborators (John Williams and Spielberg, Danny Elfman and Tim Burton, etc.) Week 6: overview of course and 21st century film scoring (Thomas Newman, Howard Shore, Michael Giacchino, Hans Zimmer, James Horner, Rachel Portman) David Möschler is an award-winning Bay Area conductor, musical director, and lecturer. He has worked on over 100 different theater productions throughout the country, and served on the faculty of Academy of Art University, San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He frequently guest lectures for many local organizations, specializing in musical theater and film music. In 2013 Möschler founded the Awesöme Orchestra Collective, which he conducts every month. The class will consist of lecture, film and music clips, and discussion. Some supplemental reading and handouts, and suggestions for local concerts will be provided.