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 Posted:   Oct 16, 2013 - 5:52 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)


 Posted:   Oct 16, 2013 - 6:57 PM   
 By:   SBD   (Member)

An orchestral version of the "Nightmare on Elm Street" theme.


I really, really wish I was going now.

I wonder if it can top Brian May's version from "Freddy's Dead".

 Posted:   Oct 16, 2013 - 8:32 PM   
 By:   DeputyRiley   (Member)

Bernstein and Freddy? Holy bovine, like I could possibly be any more excited. Toot toot! That's just frickin awesome.

 Posted:   Oct 17, 2013 - 1:23 AM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

An orchestral version of the "Nightmare on Elm Street" theme.


I really, really wish I was going now.

I wonder if it can top Brian May's version from "Freddy's Dead".

I was wondering the same thing, though Brian May only quoted it in parts but it did sound nice in orchestral mode. Ugh, what a lineup. madrazz

 Posted:   Oct 17, 2013 - 12:10 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Off the chart! We're going where no Halloween concert has gone before! Sitting in with the band for the World Premiere of Christopher Young's new GHOST RIDER suite for choir, orchestra and heavy metal band, will be Dave Lombardo of the thrash metal band SLAYER, and Dave will be joined by his new band PHILM. The Warner Grand is going to be put to a structural test this Saturday night! CHRISTOPHER YOUNG is a legend. A superstar. We could NOT have a Varèse Halloween concert without him. Don't miss Christopher Young, with Dave Lombardo with Philm with conductor Steven Allen Fox and the Golden State Pops Orchestra plus the GSPO Chorale led by Marya Basaraba, October 19, 2013 as part of Varèse Sarabande's continuing 35th Anniversary celebration!

 Posted:   Oct 18, 2013 - 9:18 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

I am delighted to see Charles Bernstein has such a following. Not only was there a boost in sales after his announcement but there is more response on this thread to him than any other composer. I've been a fan since LOVE AT FIRST BITE and think he should have gotten more choice assignments (not that NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, SADAT, CUJO, MR. MAJESTYK, WHITE LIGHTNING, the TV movie SEA WOLF, etc. aren't impressive). He is in a small band of composers that have been used in Tarantino scores. Add to that he wrote the best film composers interview book there is:

...and pretty much was responsible for Morricone getting his Oscar by making a presentation to the academy and is on the board of governor's there.

Really look forward to see him again!

 Posted:   Oct 19, 2013 - 8:32 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Chris Young's house blew me away last night. Most astounding signature collection ever! He has everybody who was anybody in film music! We saw all but this part which we will see tonight!

The Varèse Sarabande 35th Anniversary Halloween Gala with the Golden State Pops Orchestra tomorrow night also presents an epic and terrifying exhibition of Christopher Young's Jack-o-lantern collection before the concert! Here's a peek. See you tonight!

731 - 741 South Pacific Ave
San Pedro, CA

 Posted:   Oct 19, 2013 - 4:21 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Heading off to the concert now, pretty cool tickets still available. My wife and I will be at the WHALE N ALE with dogplant beforehand if anyone wants to say hello.

 Posted:   Oct 20, 2013 - 2:27 AM   
 By:   Lokutus   (Member)

Can anyone post the final programme?
any surprise guests?
did anyone get any cool new signatures? smile

 Posted:   Oct 20, 2013 - 9:43 AM   
 By:   dogplant   (Member)

Can anyone post the final programme?
any surprise guests?
did anyone get any cool new signatures? smile

Here you go:

Steven Allen Fox, maestro
Victor Pesavento, music director
Robert Townson, producer and host
Maestra Marya Basaraba, Golden State Pops Chorale (all artists in scary makeup)

Varese Halloween Overture: Halloween / A Nightmare on Elm Street / The Fly / Psycho / The Omen (Carpenter / Bernstein / Shore / Herrmann / Goldsmith) [LoDuca]
Dracula (Williams) [Fox]
Children of Dune (Tyler) [Tyler]
The Ghost & Mrs. Muir (Herrmann) [Debney]
Beauty and the Beast (Holdridge) [Holdridge]
Something Wicked This Way Comes (Delerue) [Holdridge, Sara Andon flute]
Alien (Goldsmith) [Eidelman]

I, Robot / Hellboy / Mimic / Knowing (Beltrami) [Beltrami]
Game of Thrones (Djawadi) [Fox]
Ghostbusters (Bernstein) [Edelman, Sara Andon flute]
True Blood (Barr) [Edelman]
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (Edelman) [Edelman]
Ghost Rider (Young) [Fox, Dave Lombardo drums, Garry Nestler guitar, Dan Lutz bass]

Encore: The Omen, Ave Satani (Goldsmith) [Fox]

Curtain call was with, I believe, just about every living composer whose work was performed, and a few spirits of those who were otherwise unable to attend. Elmer Bernstein's son and Georges Delerue's widow were also in the audience, which made it especially cool. Highlights, for me, were the suites of 'Something Wicked' and 'Ghostbusters' -- the latter was really wonderful with a fantastic and original new arrangement by Randy Edelman who spoke movingly about Elmer, and Sara Andon did an amazing job playing a flute rendition of the Ondes Martinot role. And the finale of 'Ghost Rider' was ferocious and spine-tingling. Christopher Young vaulted up on stage to hug Steven Allen Fox!

It was a full house, and a wonderful evening.

 Posted:   Oct 20, 2013 - 9:46 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

Thanks for the report, dogplant!

While the concert sounded great, I'm even more curious about all the social get-togethers and stuff. I've seen some pics on facebook (from the Chris Young party, for example), but I hope someone can make a full report of all the shenanigans, maybe in Peter's FFM thread.

 Posted:   Oct 20, 2013 - 10:12 AM   
 By:   Matt B   (Member)

It was a full house, and a wonderful evening.

Absolutely right. Wonderful night of film music from a whole bunch of incredibly talented people.

 Posted:   Oct 20, 2013 - 10:46 AM   
 By:   Maleficio   (Member)

Was the SOMETHING WICKED suite the London Sessions suite? How long was it?

 Posted:   Oct 25, 2013 - 6:52 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Alas I have been floored by 4 days of events (5 if you include the Goblin concert) and resting from putting together the most elaborate party (let alone Halloween party) I ever gave. My wife Nancy worked mightily keeping the core of it solid while I flailed around with 1001 Halloween tricks and treats. Don't know how the party came across but here is my take on the GSPO night:

Despite being a dedicated hardcore fan of the GSPO I always get cynical just before a concert. How can they keep things up to expectations when they come up with such incredible pieces each time? The Anniversary concert had Giacchino's magnificent STAR TREK suite that brought down the house. This time someone got the idea of taking Chris Young's GHOSTRIDER suite and getting Dave Lombardo of Slayer and his new band Philm to meld with the GSPO to do some symphonic heavy metal. It is as difficult to pull off as it sounds. In the past I have described my reaction to certain performances saying I was blown away. This time I mean it literally. The tricky sync that had Hans Zimmer struggling at the Anniversary concert became a triumph on a 8.5 magnitude. If Varese does do a video of this maybe you might get a sense of what it was like, except the vibrating in my skull. And I mean that in a good way. Even Chris Young who said he heard all the flubs (as he would since he knows what the ideal would sound like with as many takes as you need) said he was powerfully impressed. Steven Allen Fox (who conducted the least amount of pieces I have ever seen him conduct) said he was totally spent as if he had been conducting all night. And yet the challenge of it and the whole night seemed to energize everyone up there, particularly a cellist who took off more and more with each piece (anybody get her name?). This was an earthshattering masterpiece! I better stop before I start sounding like the Varese pre-hype!

Everybody seemed to have their own favorites pieces so I will just give mine. Next would be Randy Edelman doing a GHOSTBUSTERS suite. I am one hell of an Elmer Bernstein fan but this score never impressed me. Randy got the GHOSTBUSTERS II score assignment and got to know Elmer. They talked about how difficult it was to write for comedy and get respect for it. They parted saying they should meet for coffee again. It never happened. But when Varese offered him to concoct from Elmer's sketches and notes this suite, he took it as an opportunity to go back and have that coffee metaphorically. And what he found among those sketches and notes was a revelation. As Randy said, he didn't know what they did to the music in the movie but what he unearthed was something else again. And indeed it sounded like a different score. Also the playing had a vibrancy I have not heard in ages. My gosh he did right by Elmer, this score is really wonderful. And may I say something about Sara Andon who has been taking a lot of flack here lately. Okay she ain't James Galway but who is? When she did the Delerue (not an easy piece) she showed how capable she was, although I don't think anyone ever argued about that. But with this GHOSTBUSTERS suite she was sublime! I don't know if Randy got it out of her or it came from herself, and I don't care. She was impeccable and when you reach that level you are golden in my eyes.

Then John Debney playing for the first time ever a suite from Bernard Herrmann's THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR. The flow and ebb of Herrmann's music personifies the ghost whose life was the sea. Add to that the sad unrequited love of both Mrs. Muir and the captain, simply because they live on two different plains of existence. It is something only Herrmann could have been so attuned to. And Debney acquits himself well with this very emotional and complex music, Herrmann's Sturm und Drang.

And then sometimes you can be reminded of something you forgot. Cliff Eidelman who gave such a moving performance and memory of RUDY last spring, brought his knowledge and Jerry expertise to his performance of the end title to ALIEN. I first heard the eeriness of space coming out of nothing. Then underneath that something else, something living and moving in the music - unseen. Then finally the horn, the human element. Humanity in this void. And then I said to myself holy mackerel not even Herrmann got so many layers out of a piece of music this night. And the orchestrations are just as complex, with instruments playing slightly differently or going off in totally diverse directions. Nothing lazy here. I've heard this many times and yet tonight I have heard for the first time.

The night had so many special moments you can almost lose yourself amongst them. The best of the rest for me were the Marco Beltrami suite, Lee Holdridge doing his own BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and Steven Allen Fox delivering John William's DRACULA. Oh yeah Joseph LoDuca's Halloween Overture was just plain fun.

Now as much as Varese brought music to this table that could not be had anywhere, you have got to hand it to Steven Allen Fox and the GSPO, who has brought together this ragtag bunch of players into a kitchen that everybody from Disney to major composers have sought out to deliver their cuisine. And, as everybody knows, the best food in the world is nothing if you do not cook it right. The GSPO is gourmet.

Of course their next show on December 23rd is their Holiday Gala with much light and frothy fair and not as challenging as some of these other concerts.


 Posted:   Oct 25, 2013 - 11:43 PM   
 By:   Advise & Consent   (Member)

Couldn't have put it better myself Henry.

But even more remarkable than this great concert was Christopher Young's indefatiguable enthusiasm and generosity to the the assembled musicans. Mr. Young is, for lack of a better word, a lovely human being. A true one of a kind.

 Posted:   Oct 26, 2013 - 10:13 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Couldn't have put it better myself Henry.

But even more remarkable than this great concert was Christopher Young's indefatiguable enthusiasm and generosity to the the assembled musicans. Mr. Young is, for lack of a better word, a lovely human being. A true one of a kind.

You are so right. I had never been to his house. It is like going to Disneyland. He was so generous and so open to what he calls "fellow fans" at the FFM meet and greet I was flabberghasted. AND as if all that he does wasn't enough if you look at the GSPO donor list he has been one of the financial, as well as artistic, backbones of the organanization, contributed thousands and thousands over the years and bringing in more with his matching funds. He REALLY has fallen in love with the GSPO.

 Posted:   Oct 27, 2013 - 11:00 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Besides my take on the concert above here is another review:

 Posted:   Oct 28, 2013 - 12:10 AM   
 By:   Superman1701   (Member)

It was an awesome night thats for sure. Glad to have been apart of the whole weekend.

 Posted:   Oct 28, 2013 - 3:00 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

...and somebody did like my sunday afterparty. Thanks Mark!

 Posted:   Oct 30, 2013 - 9:57 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

REVIEW from The Pasadena Star-News

Golden State Pops Orchestra opens season with a musical Halloween extravaganza

By John Farrell

Posted: 10/22/13, 10:04 AM PDT |

It was more, a lot more, than just a few scary scores and people dressed up in costumes.

This year, the Golden State Pops Orchestra and Maestro Steven Allen Fox opened their 2013 season, the orchestra’s 12th, on Saturday night at the Warner Grand Theatre in San Pedro, collaborating with Varese Sarabande records and record producer Robert Townson to present the “Varese Sarabande 35th Anniversary Halloween Gala.” The concert featured the orchestra, flautist Sara Andon, the Golden State Pops Chorale and six guest conductors in a program that mixed brand-new works with American and world premieres of older works, all played with the Pops’ usual flair.

There was theatrical smoke blowing onto the Warner Grand stage, and members of the Chorale had decked themselves out with eye-shadow, but this was not an ordinary Halloween show. Townson was host and presented an evening of music that featured a number of works from recent movies, plus classic works by composers Elmer Bernstein and Bernard Herrmann. There were costumes in the audience, too (including a young boy in a suit of heavy fur that must have been very uncomfortable), but the focus was on stage.

Townson introduced each number with appropriate comments. The first, appropriately, was the “Varese Sarabande Overture,” a compilation of music from the scores of five films, including Herrmann’s “Psycho” and Jerry Goldsmith’s “The Omen” conducted by Joseph LoDuca, an effective and loud introduction to what was to come. Maestro Fox was next, presenting the end title from John Williams’ “Dracula,” a piece that proved elegant and even quiet in its spirit of finality.

Herrmann apparently said that his favorite movie score he ever composed was the one for “The Ghost and Mrs. Muir,” which had enough of a Halloween connection to be featured alongside “The Mummy” and “Dracula.” Conducted by John Debney, the work was gentle and even elegiac, a contrast to other works on the lengthy program.

Lee Holdridge conduced his Emmy-award winning theme from “Beauty and the Beast,” and then returned to the stage for a suite from Georges Delerue’s score for “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” with Andon as flute soloist. She was dressed in a very tight evening dress but managed to flute with dexterity and a little passion in the short work. She and Edelman returned in the second set (she in another designer number) and collaborated on a suite Edelman had created from Elmer Bernstein’s score for “Ghostbusters.”

The work was a surprising revelation: much more than just a crowd-pleasing movie score. It was passionate and delicate, and it gave Andon’s flute plenty of range for delicious expression and delicate passages. It was billed as the world premiere of the work by Townson, and it should not be the last time it is heard.

Edelman continues with a performance of his score for “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor,” which was noisy, and a suite from “True Blood” by Nathan Barr. Marco Beltrami opened the second half conducting a suite he put together from his scores for “I, Robot,” “Hellboy,” “Mimic” and “Knowing” that was a crowd pleaser.

For the concert’s end, Maestro Fox, with the band Philm and the Chorale, played a suite from the film “Ghost Rider,” and a brief encore from “Omen.”

Townson did a fine job of introducing the music, and the concert — the second in a row between Varese Sarabande and the Pops — was interesting and even occasionally exciting. The audience included plenty of folks who were there for the film music and were willing to shout there approval. Only the Chorale seemed a little out of place. They sang well and were clearly heard, but since the music provided offered little but passionate syllables, they didn’t get much to do.

Next on the Pops schedule for Dec. 21, is another collaboration between Varese Sarabande and the orchestra, the “Varese Sarabande 35th Anniversary Gala,” which will include more film music, including Herrmann’s music for “A Christmas Carol.”

John Farrell is a Long Beach-based freelance writer.

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