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HORROR in the Vienna Konzerthaus
Last post Thu, Jun 02 2022 by William, 7 replies.
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Posted on Tue, May 24 2022 01:45
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704

I completed a symphonic fantasy "Cthulhu,"  which is inspired by H. P. Lovecraft.  This performance is done with VI and MIR Vienna Konzerthaus.  It is scored for a slightly weird orchestra using only four flutes - c flute 1 and 2, alto flute and bass flute, serpent, ophicleide, brass,  Appassionata strings, percussion, solo voices and choir, and the Konzerthaus organ augmented by some discordant organ sounds.  Lovecraft wrote often of "amorphous idiot flute players"  (no offense to living flute players) and a "cracked organ" which I tried to represent.  It was just released so I'm not sure about these links but here are  a few - 

Apple music



Posted on Thu, May 26 2022 15:41
by Macker
Joined on Tue, Aug 21 2018, London, Posts 561

The reassuringly complete competence in composition and production here played a great part in my unreserved engagement and enjoyment of this suite. Thank you for this very fine work, William.

I've been mixing various parts of the suite into various recorded video extracts and also the live video of a certain court trial going on at the moment. For me, William's horror-themed suite here works magically in giving my feelings and emotions greater strength, depth, clarity and contrast.

As one of millions of observers of this trial, it seems to me the trial is about trying to expose the "Great Old One" - Lovecraft's Cthulhu. William's suite works so very well because it addresses the multifarious deceptions of covert evil, and, corespondingly, our muted suspicions as well as our direct recognition of evil exposed. There is a wonderfully complex interplay of sub-narratives and surface narratives, both in the trial and in William's Cthulhu suite.

I was reminded at many moments of the fabulous partnership of A. Hitchcock and B. Herrmann.

A profound suite with much magic and scintillation. Bravo and thanks again, William!

"Music embodies feeling without forcing it to contend and combine with thought, as it is forced in most arts and especially in the art of words."
~ Franz Liszt
Posted on Thu, May 26 2022 23:26
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704

thanks Macker, though I'm not clear on what was being combined with the music...

Posted on Fri, May 27 2022 13:40
by Macker
Joined on Tue, Aug 21 2018, London, Posts 561

First I listened to your whole suite, playing your Cthulhu Youtube playlist all through from start to finish. At various moments while just listening to this profoundly evocative music, my imagination started itching for some visual narrative also.

Some time later, I wondered what it would be like to stream Cthulhu while also streaming various Youtube videos relating to the current "big trial", either directly from the courtroom live video feed or from other Youtube videos relating to the trial. Your Cthulhu played back in one Chrome tab, while trial-related videos played back in other Chrome tabs. Sometimes I selected various Cthulhu moments while letting one video play back naturally; at other times I selected various video moments while letting Cthulhu play back naturally.

These were all simply realtime streaming experiments; I haven't attempted to record any combinations.

I can only report that during these dual-streaming experiments there were many, many superb coincidences of visual and music narratives. For me, all of these coincidences evoked and strengthened the drama of attempts to reveal the real Cthulhu, the real, horrifying monster. That revelation is dramatic enough, but confronting the foul, cunning ways in which Cthulhu attempts to assert control, and to conceal itself and throw suspicion and blame onto others, are also deeply dramatic. These disturbing and dramatic elements are brought out in especially vivid, sharp and meaningful contrast by virtue of apposite accompanying music. Your "Cthulhu" suite certainly has that power, William.

"Cthulhu" is a powerfully evocative symphonic fantasy suite - either on its own, or as an accompanying score.

Right now I must get back to the closing arguments being streamed live from the courtroom!

Dammit, when it's all over I hope someone puts together a highly dramatic video edition of the trial and relevant events, and asks to use your "Cthulhu" for the score! (It won't be me, I'm no video editor.)

"Music embodies feeling without forcing it to contend and combine with thought, as it is forced in most arts and especially in the art of words."
~ Franz Liszt
Posted on Sun, May 29 2022 01:52
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704

Macker, I now understand your reassignment of the music to the video and think it is very creative.  I remember reading Cocteau would re-purpose various parts of George Auric's scores for his films, in ways completely different from the original purpose and yet with excellent effect. I can understand the return of Cthulhu in the courtroom though the original idea was my attempt at picturing Lovecraft's great story of the monster emerging from his ancient temple and pursuing the ship across the water until the captain realizes he cannot escape but must barrel into Cthulhu - thereby blowing him into smithereens (which nevertheless coalesce for later reanimation).  

Posted on Sun, May 29 2022 12:00
by Errikos
Joined on Tue, Jun 12 2007, Posts 1107

I have only heard half the suite so far, I don't know how it could have been much darker... Bill is dangerous!...

If you can't notate/MIDI it yourself, it's NOT your music!

In these modern days to be vulgar, illiterate, common and vicious, seems to give a man a marvelous infinity of rights that his honest fathers never dreamed of. - Oscar Wilde
Posted on Thu, Jun 02 2022 23:21
by William
Joined on Sun, Nov 24 2002, USA, Posts 5704

Some of this suite is actually  more positive and not so uniformly dark as I was trying to suggest the "ethereal" and fantasy-oriented stories also. Lovecraft is very similar to Poe in that even though they are both known for their horror stories, they were extremely inspired by Romantic conceptions of supernal beauty such as Poe's "Lenore" and Lovecraft's descriptions of wondrous cities discovered in dreams.  Also the White Ship which was imagined as a mysterious vessel appearing out of the fog that took passengers to mystical, unknown lands.  

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