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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Music That Matters: Top 50 Movie Symphonies (#49 Duel Of The Fates by John Williams)

What can I say about John Williams? He is a pure genius of which I don't know if we will ever see another composer like him come around ever again. When it was announced that George Lucas was going to make three more Star Wars movies back in the early 90's, I was excited. Not only to see the origins of Darth Vader, but to hear what John Williams was going to come up with as a score for the new movies. Would he mail it in and just use the old themes, or would he bring something new to the table? I'm glad that John Williams went with the latter. The Phantom Menace unfortunately failed to live up to expectations, but there were two good things about the film. And both of these things coincided with another. The Phantom Menace had the best lightsaber duel of all the Star Wars movies (Darth Maul vs. Qui Gon Jinn & Obi-Wan Kenobi) which was helped with a beautiful piece of music composed by John Williams called Duel Of The Fates. The piece was so well received that portions of it could sporadically be heard in the last two Star Wars prequels. Duel Of The Fates actually incorporates a choir with the orchestra. If I'm not mistaken, this was the first theme from the Star Wars movies to use a choir. Just a little bit more trivia before I go: Duel Of The Fates was the only song performed by an orchestra to make the Total Request Live countdown where it stayed on for 11 days. Yet, John Williams was not able to add another Oscar nomination for this dynamic piece of music.

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