Screaming Lambs Or Counting Sheep?

I spent the morning scouring the internet for examples of Sir Anthony Hopkins’s music—that’s right, he too is now part of the composer club (check it: the Dallas Symphony plays his tunes tomorrow night). With images of fava beans and a nice Chianti dancing in my head, I really wanted to hear what this Academy Award-winning actor’s music might actually sound like. Unfortunately, all of my Googling unearthed not a single mp3. My colleagues here in the office have concluded that Call-Me-Tony’s music will most likely sound retro, safe, and unimaginative.

Taking into account the “Sir James Paul McCartney effect,” I can see where they’re coming from. However, I’m also inclined to think that this particular actor might posses a more adventurous creative spirit, i.e. his music might be more interesting than Paul’s. Something that I’m reminded of every year at the ASCAP young composer awards is that young (read: inexperienced) composers tend to write very conservatively, often sounding like ersatz-Brahms or similar. I’m not saying that Paul McCartney is an inexperienced musician. He was, remember, in one of the best bands of the century, but his foray into orchestral forms fell flat to many ears.

So what does Anthony Hopkins’s music sound like? He sites Scriabin, Debussy, Ravel, and “the Russians” as composers that he admires, but this doesn’t necessarily mean we’re going to hear simple regurgitations of the aforementioned. Hopkins says, “I don’t analyze, I just go for it. I work on the premise of have no fear. A composer I respect very much said, ‘This is great, you’re breaking all the rules.'” So what’s the verdict? Do you think we have another Beatle in our midst, or do you think the music will have a little Hannibal Lecter gnarl to it?

4 thoughts on “Screaming Lambs Or Counting Sheep?

  1. philmusic

    Um, I don’t think we realize what this concert and hundreds of others like it mean. The gatekeepers are outsourcing music composition away from professional composers. I’m not just talking about the “anything but serial types” though that’s certainly in the mix.

    If there is any sign of our loss of status in the professional world this is it.

    Phil Fried

    Reply
  2. philmusic

    Perhaps it also shows that for some reason everybody still wants to be us.

    Phil Fried, on a much more positive note

    Reply
  3. Adrienne

    And the verdict is…
    Having my curiosity piqued after reading Randy’s post about Sir Anthony Hopkins having his compositions performed by the Dallas Symphony, I went online to find out what the “critics” had to say. There is no doubt that Sir Anthony is one of the great screen actors of our time, and there is a bit of envy that his fame has allowed him to have his music performed by such an august group. It must have been one hell of a fundraiser!

    Reply

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