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The music of the Star Wars franchise is composed and produced in conjunction with the development of the feature films, television series, and other merchandise within the epic space opera franchise created by Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom Lucas. The music for the primary feature films which serves as the basis for the rest of the related media was written by John Williams.
Williams' scores for the eight saga films count among the most widely known and popular contributions to modern film musicand utilize a symphony orchestra and features an assortment of fifty recurring musical themes to represent characters and other plot elements: Released between andthe music for the primary feature films was, in the case of the first two trilogies, performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and, in select passages, by the London Voices chorus.
Williams also scored the seventh and eighth episodes in the franchise's sequel trilogy, and binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom is currently slated to score the ninth and last episode as well.
The sequel trilogy was largely orchestrated and conducted by William Rossand it was performed by a freelance Hollywood orchestra and in a few passages by the Los Angeles Master Chorale. Additionally, music for several animated television series spinoffs has been written by Kevin Kiner and Ryan Shore.
The scores are primarily performed by a symphony orchestra of varying size joined, in several sections, by a choir of varying size. Throughout all of the franchise, which consists of a total of over 18 hours of music,  Williams has written approximately fifty themes in one of the largest, richest collection of themes in the history of film music.
Kevin Kiner composed the score to the film Star Wars: The Clone Warsthe predecessor to the animated TV series of the same name. Both properties loosely use some of the original themes and music by John Williams.
Kiner's own material for the film includes a theme for Anakin Skywalker's Padawan learner, Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom Tanoas well as a theme for Jabba the Hutt's uncle Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom. Kiner went on to score the TV series' entire six seasons, which concluded in A soundtrack album was released that same year by Walt Disney Records.
Kiner continued his work with the franchise for the animated series Star Wars Rebelswhich also incorporates Williams' themes. Ryan Shore serves as the composer for Star Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom Forces of Destiny —present.
The scores utilize an eclectic variety of musical styles, many culled from the Late Romantic idiom of Richard Strauss and his contemporaries that itself was incorporated into the Golden Age Hollywood scores of Erich Korngold and Max Steiner. The reasons for this are known to involve George Lucas's desire to allude to the underlying fantasy element of the narrative binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom than the science-fiction setting, as well as to ground the otherwise strange and fantastic setting in well-known, audience-accessible music.
Indeed, Lucas maintains that much of the films' success relies not on advanced visual effects, but on the simple, direct emotional appeal of its plot, characters and, importantly, music. Lucas originally wanted to use tracked orchestral and film music in a similar manner to A Space Odysseyitself a major inspiration for Star Wars. Williams, however, advised to form a soundtrack with recurring musical themes to augment the story, while Lucas's choice of music could be used as a temporary track for Williams to base his musical choices on.
Williams often composed the music in a heroic but tongue-in-cheek style. Star Wars was one of the film scores that heralded the revival of grand symphonic scores in the late s.
One technique that particularly influenced these scores is Williams' use of the leitmotifwhich was most famously associated with the operas of Richard Wagner and, in early film scores, with Steiner.
A leitmotif is a phrase or melodic cell that signifies a character, place, plot element, mood, idea, relationship or other specific part of the film.
It is commonly used in modern film scoring as a device for mentally anchoring certain parts of a film to the soundtrack. The more varied and nuanced the use of leitmotif is, the more memorable it typically becomes.
A good example of this is the way in which Williams subtly conceals the intervals of binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom The Imperial March " within Anakin's Theme in The Phantom Menaceimplying his dark future to come. Also important is the density in which leitmotifs are used: Film music, binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom, typically needs to strike a balance between in terms of the number of binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom used, so as to not become too dense for the audience being preoccupied with the visuals to follow.
Williams re-recorded some of his suites from binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom first trilogy with the Skywalker Symphony Orchestra as an album. Several of his later themes were released as singles and music videos, and were later released a collection of suites from the six films as a compilation that played to a series of clips from the films, with sparse dialogue and sound effects.
These became the basis for a series of hour-long concerts which featured Star Wars music to images from the films, Star Wars: In Concertwhich took place in and The scores of the first trilogy in the form of its Blu-Ray Special Edition release and The Force Awakens are performed as Live to Projection concerts, but with greatly reduced forces.
The performances follow the music of the finished film, with some of the music looped, tracked or omitted entirely, and do not feature any of the diegetic pieces and often omit the choral parts. John Williams sketched the score for his various orchestrations and wrote the music for a full symphony orchestra ranging from 79 to players overall  and, in several passages, chorus ranging from 12 to singers overall and a few non-orchestral instruments.
The orchestration is not consistent throughout the different films,  but generally the score makes use of a considerable brass section over a comparatively smaller string section, giving the series its heraldic, brassy sound. Several of the scores require larger forces, including a large over piece romantic-period orchestra, a mixed choir and even a boy choir, although none of the scores call for particularly immense forces compared to larger film or theater works.
The former called for a third harp and fourth bassoon, while the latter and all prequel scores utilized a fuller string section. Revenge of the Sith also utilized a second set of timpani. Comparatively, the original Star Wars trilogy and the sequel trilogy films call for much smaller forces of as little as 82 players, and small choral accompaniment in select cues.
In live performances, the forces are usually greatly reduced: Official Star Wars Concerts were held with as little as piece orchestras and piece mixed choral ensembles or with the choir omitted altogether. John Williams wrote a series of themes and motifs for certain characters and ideas in each of the Star Wars films. The multiple installments allowed Williams to compose some 51 themes and counting and reprise some of them extensively, continually developing them over a long binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom of screen time.
Williams introduced a few themes in each episode six themes on average and focused on making each of his principal themes long-lined and melodically distinct from the others so as to increase their memorability. Williams occasionally forges small connections between some of these themes, sometimes for a narrative purpose and sometimes in the more general favor of cohesion. This technique allowed him especially in his scores to the first trilogy to have each theme play out for binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom large number of occasions the Force Theme plays over one hundred times in the series and over long periods of time.
Each score can be said to have a "main theme", which is developed and repeated frequently throughout the film, often to unusual extents such as the frequency in which The Imperial March is revisited during Empire Strikes Back. A main theme for the franchise exists as well which is the music of the main titles but, interestingly, a main theme does not exist to represent a particular trilogy.
Instead, each trilogy and to a lesser extent, each film has its own style or soundscape. Williams' Star Wars catalog remains one of the largest collections of leitmotifs in the history of cinema,  although it still falls short of Wagner's use of leitmotifs in the Ring Cycle or even Howard Shore 's work on the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings films. Shore and Wagner's themes are also inter-related and arranged into sets of subsets of related themes through various melodic or harmonic connections, whereas Williams prefers greater distinction between his themes.
Williams' use of his themes in Star Wars is at binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom romantic rather than strictly thematic,  the themes sometimes being used randomly because their mood fits a certain scene, rather than for a narrative purpose. For instance, the theme for Luke Skywalker is also used as the main theme for the entire franchise, as well as a generic "heroic theme" in conjunction with various characters without any connection to its namesake.
Princess Leia's Theme is used for the death of Obi-Wan Kenobi in the original Star Warswhich has little to do with her character even though she is present in the scene. Multiple uses of the Force Theme are also non-thematic. It is binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom used for R2-D2's heroics during the opening action scene in Revenge of the Sith.
Kylo Ren's secondary theme, meant to evoke his more conflicted side, is often used interchangeably with his main theme, in a similarly menacing setting. Even the melodic connections between some of the themes sometimes do not represent a straightforward dramatic purpose, such as the connection of "Across the Stars" to Count Dooku 's motif and the Battle of Geonosis in Attack of the Clones.
In fact, Some of Williams' themes are written from the outset purely to convey a binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom mood rather than evoke a character or setting, such as the Throne Room music of the original Star Wars or the Pursuit motif from The Force Awakens.
Some of this music was re-tracked into other parts of the film, or even another film in the series, by the filmmakers. Attack of the Clonesthe first film to be shot digitally, had major edits made after the scoring process, leading to the inclusion of tracked music over many of the digitally-created sequences such as the Droid Factory on Geonosis or the Clone Army's arrival to the battle.
These scenes used music such as Yoda's theme or incidental music from The Phantom Menace with little dramatic connection to what is occurring on screen. In the original Star Warssome of the music for binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom Death Star's Trash Compactor scene was used over an extended shot of the arrival into Mos Eisley inserted in the film's Special Edition.
Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom similarities exist between the final scenes of The Phantom Menace with Finn's confession to Rey in Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom Force Awakensprobably a result of temp-track choice. Binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom composers for the franchise used Williams' principal themes in their own compositions, whether it be for the trailers to the main films, spin-off films, television series, or video games.
More often than not, these composers also use the principal themes more for their emotional effect for their respective projects. Because Williams scores one episode at a time  and attempts to base each score on new material as much as possible, the musical material does not have a particularly cohesive structure as a whole: The same can be said about some themes only composed for the prequels such as Duel of the Fateswhich would have been perfectly applicable to the films in the first trilogy, had they been produced in the narrative order.
In fact, since the prequels featured both their own stock of leitmotives and recurring themes from the previous films, they boasted a larger catalog of themes, whereas the use of the leitmotifs in a cycle of works typically involves increasing density towards the later installments in the narrative order.
Also, the themes in the prequels appear in shorter, blockier statements and the motives themselves are often short, rhythmic ideas, as opposed to longer melodies used in the first trilogy. Also, in the prequels the motives are often associated with places and events, rather than with characters as they are in the rest of the scores, creating a further discrepancy in the musical narrative.
Even within each trilogy, Williams often abandons a motif after a single score or two as he did with Anakin's themewrites across several films multiple motifs that serve a similar function e. In other cases, a motif is supplanted by a new one, as the Imperial March replaced the original, Imperial motif - a problem only confounded when he returned to that theme with the prequels, only for it to disappear entirely for what is now supposed to be the fourth episode; sometimes, the existing motif simply changes its thematic meaning: The Last Jedi binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom, specifically, departs from Williams method of relying primarily on new thematic material, and instead relies heavily on pre-existing themes, in keeping with Johnson's temp-track choices.
As a result, a number of themes and motifs from the previous films are constantly repeated, often in very familiar settings, such as statements of Yoda's and Leia's theme that are lifted from the concert arrangements, a reprise of the Binary Sunset rendition of the Force theme, and recurring statements of Rey's and Kylo's themes. There are some incidental phrases similar to existing themes such as Battle of the Heroes, The Immolation scene, etcetra, and some deliberate, tongue-in-cheek references, such as a quote of the Death Star motif for a scene with a clothes iron that is shot to look like a landing Star Destroyer.
Listed below are 50 leitmotifs identified in Williams' scores and another one written by Williams for John Powell's upcoming score to Solo thus far, although a few of them could be contested. Other pieces of music, described either erroneously or tenuously as leitmotifs, are discussed under "unconfirmed leitmotifs" below.
Since neither Williams nor his office ever provided a full list of the leitmotifs used in every Star Wars film, there is some controversy around the exact number of themes, with some taking an inclusive approach that identifies various leitmotifs, even where the composer probably never intended for,  and others taking an exclusive approach. One of the key differences between the two approaches in the way in which Williams' main, long themes are approached: The featured list of themes follows what could be deduced to be Williams own approach, seeing as how he - in his liner notes - didn't refer to such pieces as the B-phrase of Luke's theme, or the ostinato accompaniment or B-phrase of the Imperial March, distinct as they are, as separate thematic ideas.
Its also, largely, the approach taken by Matessino and Adams. Certain analysts will also list a single melody multiple times under various guises.
For instance, the emperor's theme can also be labeled separately in binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom same glossary as the "dark side" theme, Darth Sidius' theme, etc The inclusive approach also tends to identify leitmotives even where they don't meet the criteria of recurrence. This is the result of Williams' propensity in these scores and otherwise to write material that is either melodic, rhythmic, harmonic or timbral specifically to an individual setpiece or none-recurring plot-element in the film, such as The Battle of Hoth, the Chase through Coruscant, or The Battle of Crait.
These individual pieces of music have sometimes been described as having thematic significance,  occasionally in fleeting comments even by Williams himself,  but since they do not recur in a different part of the narrative, they are not truly thematic in any way. Even when some of these figures do recur, it is often unclear whether they are substantial enough to be assigned with thematic significance, as these instances often includes material that is incidental in nature such as several figures used in the finale of The Empire Strikes Back ;  material that is purely rhythmic or timbral like various "bouncing" horn figures for Luke's landspeeder search in the original Star Wars,  the use of the synthesizer to represent Vader's menace in The Empire Strikes Back, a women's chorus for the underwater scenes of The Phantom Menace; material that is of a generic nature, such as his use of "mournful homophonic" choir in The Last Jedi for climactic moments;  or material that is part of Williams' stylistic choices as a composer, more than a thematic statement unique to the series.
For instance, his use of tritones often denotes mystery, a device he uses for the droids landing on Tatooine and again in the concert arrangement of "The Throne Room. However, similar devices are also binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom in Indiana Jones to represent the mysteries of the Ark  and the Crystal Skull.
Hence, it is more of a way for Williams to evoke mystery, than a motif conceived specifically for any one of these scores. Similarly, other gestures taken from pre-existing music such as Williams' use of the Dies Irae binary options gold trading russell street cinemascom to denote impending doom have been falsely identified as leitmotifs, even though Williams clearly described sections of music that rely on this gesture, such as his original take of the binary sunset, as non-thematic.
In fact, sometimes the supposedly recurring material is similar, but not in fact identical.