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?