HOLLYWOOD SUITE

I. Overture / The Adventure Theme

II. The Romantic Theme

III. The Action Theme

IV. The Dramatic Theme / Finale

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Music and movies have always been a passion, with Hollywood Suite I brought together both.

The Hollywood Suite was written as a tribute to film music and is divided into four movements, each of them representing a style of music related to movie scenes: Adventure,  Romantic,  Action and Drama.

When I started to think about the instrumentation of this work I immediately thought that this work needed a big orchestral sound, however, I wrote before it a piano version of the suite. This approach helped me to have a better perception of the entire work in terms of structure, harmony and how the themes would work together. 

The piano version of the Hollywood Suite.

After writing the piano version of the suite, I started to think about the instrumentation I needed to achieve the type of sound that I wanted for this work. I ended up using a symphony orchestra instrumentation with woodwinds section in groups of 3, the brass section in groups of 4 (except tuba, of course), a large section of percussion, harp and also a large string section.

I. Overture / The Adventure Theme

It’s fair to say that the first movement sets the tone for the entire work. The main theme is introduced by the piano, a theme that will appear, sometimes with rhythmic and melodic variations, throughout the suite.
The challenge was to write a main theme that would be captivating and at the same time simple, so it could be transformed and played along the work.

 

Manuscript score of the first movement

II. The Romantic Theme

Romance… something that is very present in Hollywood movies, right?
To describe a romantic scene I needed I lyrical and passionate theme with a soft background, so, an alto flute introduces the romantic theme, and contrasting with the other movements, this movement presents a simpler and lighter orchestration in order to highlight the main melody.

 
Manuscript of the Romantic Theme.

In the first version I called it “The Love Theme” but then changed it to “Romantic Theme”.

III. The Action Theme

After the previous, very calm and relaxing movement, let’s bring the house down!

For this movement, I spent a few days structuring and thinking about the type of sound that I wanted to achieve. From the start, I realized that in order to create an impacting movement, that would describe an action scene, I would have to use a wide array of orchestral sounds. Along the movement, several effects were used to achieve it (like glissandi and flatterzung) together with a denser orchestration. 

The drums at the beginning of the movement were not present in the first version of the score, but after hearing it I thought they would create more momentum to the movement.

 
Manuscript of the Action Theme.

IV. The Dramatic Theme / Finale

This movement can be divided into two parts. In the first part, a new theme is introduced, the dramatic theme, first played by the piano and later on by the strings.
In the second part, the finale, all themes and leitmotifs presented on the previous movements, are revisited through rhythmic and melodic variations.

 
Manuscript of the last movement

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