ENTRY #11

FEBRUARY 9TH 2018

Here we are with my latest composition task: Pastiche in the style of the Harry Potter theme, composed by John Williams.

What has become ubiquitously known as the "main" theme of the Harry Potter films was actually originally titled "Hedwig's Theme" by John Williams from the first initial Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone soundtrack. While doing close listenings to the soundtrack and browsing the internet for others' critical analysis of the score, I found a fantastic new YouTube channel called FilmScoreAnalysis (run by Brad Frey), perfect for my purposes. Specifically I found Frey's video analyzing Hedwig's theme, in which he ingeniously breaks apart each motif found throughout the piece, and shows highlighted instances of the melodies as they play throughout, plus scrupulous notes on chord usage, modulations, supporting instruments and their roles, etc. Here's the first screenshot where he breaks down the main motifs of the piece:

 

So what I've done is write up a handful of variations on the main theme (Theme A according to Brad Frey), using its inversion, retrograde, following consonants/dissonance, following the chord structure, etc. That looks like this:

Much like with my previous pastiches, the idea is to generate new melodic ideas derived from the original theme, to hone in on a strong new melody for the pastiche, that is different enough yet true to the spirit of the original. So at the moment I'm playing around with these variations to pinpoint a strong option to pursue in order to achieve a successful pastiche! 

More to come on my musical endeavoring into the magical world of J. K. Rowling via the incredible soundscape of John Williams!