Composers from Amazon.com's Get Started in Classical:
Composer of "Dracula"
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Philip Glass gives the classic film Dracula a new lease on life with his score
Although Philip Glass has gained more official recognition from Hollywood in recent years (in the form of an Academy Award nomination for the score to Martin Scorsese's Kundun), his love of experimental projects continues in full flush. As in the case of Glass's series of works based on Cocteau films, the composer has again returned to a legendary work from the past. With his music for the 1931 classic Dracula (also available on a new video release), Glass has created an integrated artwork that supplements and gives subtle commentary as the story unfolds on the screen. The fiendishly difficult music--full of sudden shifts from bowing to plucking and back again--receives a full-blooded performance from the Kronos Quartet, longtime collaborators with Glass. The composer speaks with Amazon.com editor Thomas May about his views on film and music, the skill of Bela Lugosi, and the pull of the Dracula myth.
Amazon.com: Each of your film scores has quite an interesting origin. How did this one come about?
Phillip Glass: I got a call from a division at Universal that handles their archives. They had decided to refurbish some of the older films and sent me three movies: Dracula, The Mummy, and Frankenstein. None of these films has music tracks, and they asked if I'd like to do one. And, of course, I said I wanted to do all three, and we laughed about that for a while. So I picked Dracula, because Bela Lugosi is so amazing--it's a beautiful, beautiful film. There have been so many versions of Dracula since then, but when you go back to 1931, to this original, you see literally only one drop of blood. By comparison [with contemporary films]--in terms of physical, overt violence--this is like a tea party! But once you start to watch it, it's very easy to be taken over by the aesthetic of the time and of the movie, so that it becomes completely spellbinding.
Read the rest of Amazon.com's interview with Glass.
More Glass can be found in Musical Information and Recommendations for Adults.
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