Throughout the scoring of ARTOIS THE GOAT (2009), I had intended to be more diligent in documenting my progress. As the hours mounted and the deadline neared I found time and energy to write in the blog waning. So I thought I'd go back and highlight a few details that I missed along the way that I wanted to be sure to talk about.
First of all, this was one of the more challenging score I have put together. My financial resources were extremely limited which also limited my overall compositional choices. In the end I'm quite pleased with the result and even more proud of the people who helped make it all possible.
The score is broken up into several facets. Each facet represents a different slice of the movie and is musically quite diverse from the other facets.
The first major facet of the score involves the star of the film...cheese. This music is composed for a combination of two accordions, two bassoons, harp, harpsichord, snare drum, and contrabass. It has a quasi neo-baroque sound to it with French highlights. The harp and bassoon combination are especially important as they reemerge throughout the score whenever cheese is of great importance to the story.
Everything was recorded live except for the harp and harpsichord which were sampled.
There is also a facet of the movie which utilizes a pairing of cello and piano. I wrote a complete sonata to use when Virgil first gets the idea of making cheese himself and accompanies it through his various attempts. It's a Beethoven inspired piece in Cm that sports a very passionate and inspired primary theme and a much simpler and lyrical secondary theme. Both of these themes are developed a great deal throughout the these sequences.
Towards the end of the film when the struggle ensues, I composed a series of cues written for three pianos. These are largely minimalistic and are almost the exact opposite of every piece of music that has come before it.
Along the way there is a minimalistic marimba piece, and 80's powersynth cue, a new age synth piece, a dramatic vocal finale song, and a jazzy French song during the end credits. There is also a piece entitled "Chez Yvette" recalling the famous Parisian sound of the 30s and 40s, composed by our lyricist, Olivier Giraud, that was so perfect for the film we used it in two key scenes in the movie.
It stands to be by far the most eclectic score I have yet written. I'm anxious to see how (or if) it all fits together.
Next time, I'll write a little bit more about the fine musicians I was blessed with to perform the music.