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The Swan (1956)
Music by Bronislau Kaper
The Swan The Swan
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $19.95
Limited #: 3000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Golden Age
CD Release: April 2004
Catalog #: Vol. 7, No. 5
# of Discs: 1

Released by Special Arrangement with Turner Classic Movies Music

The Swan (1956) was a romantic fairy tale set in early 20th century Europe, based on a play by Ferenc Molnar. Grace Kelly starred as a young princess whose desperate mother hopes to betroth her to the crown prince, Alec Guinness. However, Guinness's visit leads to a romantic triangle with the third leg being the palace tutor, Louis Jourdan—a commoner. What starts as a comedy of manners becomes a bittersweet romance and ultimately the coming-of-age story of Alexandra—who accepts her role in society as a rarified "swan."

The Swan was Grace Kelly's penultimate film role, which eerily foreshadowed her own destiny as Princess Grace of Monaco. The film features fine performances, gorgeous architecture (including location footage filmed in a North Carolina mansion) and splendid M-G-M production values—including a heartfelt and evocative score by Bronislau Kaper.

Kaper considered The Swan to be one of his finest projects, as if its fairy tale atmosphere rekindled his childhood memories of pre-war Europe. He ably matched its many moods, providing a shimmering, beautiful waltz for Kelly; light and frothy music for the affairs of the royal palace; an adapation of the Hungarian "Rakoczy March" as Guinness's theme; and lengthy, romantic passages for the deepening drama. His score is at turns noble, whimsical, melancholy and magical.

Kaper's score for The Swan (conducted by studio music head Johnny Green) was released on LP at the time of the film. This premiere CD features the complete original soundtrack in stereo, remixed from the original three-track masters; as well as the passages recorded specifically for the album, in monaural sound, as they were recorded (consisting of "Theme From The Swan" and brief transitions).

Bronislau Kaper Scores on FSM
About the Composer

The Polish-born Bronislau Kaper (1902-1983) parlayed a successful stint in the French film industry (1933-1935) into a longtime Hollywood contract at M-G-M (1935-1962), where he was an indispensable member of the music department and wrote many famous songs and scores (Green Dolphin Street, Invitation, Lili). He capped his M-G-M career with his mammoth symphonic score to Mutiny on the Bounty, a fan favorite. He worked in the 1960s as a freelancer, scoring Lord Jim among others. Thanks to our relationship with Turner Classic Movies Music, we have brought a significant amount of Kaper's M-G-M music to CD—with more to come. IMDB

Comments (3):Log in or register to post your own comments
This cd is pure romance. (Well, except for the "nationalist" march! :) ) It's just the right cd for that sort of mood.

And anyone who likes the main theme from THE BOYS FROM BRAZIL will enjoy hearing other Viennese-style waltzes here, too.

Kaper's comfections in this genre seem to sparkle. A great listen.

You should also check out THE GLASS SLIPPER, if you haven't already!

Track List
Instruments/Musicians
Click on each musician name for more credits

Leader (Conductor):
Johnny Green

Violin:
Sam Fiedler, Sam Freed, Jr., Werner L. Gebauer, Sidney Greene, Mort Herbert, Arnold T. Jurasky, Bernard Kundell, Joy Lyle (Sharp), Arthur Maebe, Sr., Lisa Minghetti, Irving Prager, Lou Raderman, Albert Saparoff, Byron Williams

Viola:
Cecil Figelski, Allan Harshman, Virginia Majewski, Reuben Marcus

Cello:
Alexander Borisoff, Julian Kahn, Edgar Lustgarten, Michel Penha

Bass:
George F. Boujie, Louis Previati, Arthur Shapiro

Flute:
Arthur Gleghorn

Oboe:
Arnold Koblentz

Clarinet:
Gus Bivona, Mort B. Friedman, Alex Gershunoff, Don Lodice (Logiudice), Hugo Raimondi, Andrew Young

Bassoon:
Charles A. Gould

French Horn:
John W. "Jack" Cave, Vincent DeRubertis, Herman Lebow

Trumpet:
Uan Rasey, Joe Triscari, James C. Zito

Trombone:
Nick DiMaio, Herb Taylor, Simon Zentner

Piano:
Max Rabinowitsh

Guitar:
Jack Marshall

Harp:
Catherine Gotthoffer (Johnk)

Drums:
Frank L. Carlson, Mel Pedesky, D. V. Seber

Orchestra Manager:
James C. Whelan

© 2014 Film Score Monthly. All Rights Reserved.