As the twentieth century approached, a new art form was developed, one that would go on to dominate the next hundred years. Though cinema began in silence, it quickly acquired sound and attracted musicians and composers. The new medium demanded a new approach, both aesthetically and technologically, but these problems were overcome remarkably quickly, allowing film composition to develop into a sophisticated branch of music-drama. This e-text outlines the history of film music, introduces some of the major characters, and shows how their music works in the context of film.
About the Author
John Riley is a lecturer, writer, broadcaster and curator. As well as Discover Film Music (Naxos) and Dmitry Shostakovich: a Life in Film (Tauris), he has written for Rough Guides, Methuen, Routledge, Cambridge University Press, The Independent, The Times, Sight and Sound and others, and written CD and concert programme notes. He has worked on events with the Barbican, the BFI, the BBC, the South Bank Centre and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. His show Shostakovich – My Life at the Movies was premièred by the CBSO with Simon Russell Beale, before being produced at the Komische Oper, Berlin.