There should be free popcorn with every ticket

From this week, the BBC is embarking on a celebration of cinema music - with BBC Radio 6 Music, Radios 1 & 1xtra, Radio 2, Radio 3 and the Asian Network, alongside a complimentary series of TV programmes on BBC Four, all coming together to celebrate the BBC's Sound of Cinema Season.

All next week Radio 3's Live in Concert broadcasts will be dedicated to the incredible orchestral scores of Hollywood. The BBC National Orchestra of Wales will be performing on Wednesday night at St David's Hall, and our evening of Hollywood glamour will be introduced by Mark Kermode, arguably one of the most well-known film critics in Britain today.

The concert will also mark the beginning of our 2013/2014 season at St David's Hall as orchestra-in-residence - talk about opening the season with a bang!

A great movie score should suggest the very essence of a film's intention; if there were no words, the music should leave you in no doubt as to the nature of the onscreen action. Indeed, a great soundtrack can help to immortalise a great film, and for our America at the Movies concert we have a selection of truly remarkable scores.

There are the names you would expect, names so identified with cinema that their exclusion would lead to much wailing and gnashing of teeth (mostly by the brass), such as John Williams, Howard Shore, and one of my favourites, the inimitable Danny Elfman.

However, there may be names that are not so familiar. For me, one such name is Elmer Bernstein, who, it turns out, scored two of my father's favourite films - The Ten Commandments and The Great Escape. We will perform his theme from The Magnificent Seven.

Miklós Rósza (perhaps another ‘who are you?' for some) will also feature. Some regular blog readers may remember me waxing lyrical about Rósza's music back in March 2012, when we performed his Three Hungarian Sketches at the Brangwyn Hall, Swansea, under the baton of Roberto Minczuk.

For Sound of Cinema, we will perform his music to Hitchcock's 1945 film, Spellbound. It was a stroke of luck for Rósza that he got to collaborate with Hitchcock on this movie, as Hitchcock's regular collaborator, the great Bernard Herrmann, was unavailable.

Indeed, Herrmann's scores are those that I am most looking forward to getting familiar with. His name is synonymous with the films of Hitchcock. If you were one of the many who enjoyed the Hitchcock Season at Chapter Arts Centre last year, you will have heard Herrmann's incredible writing ratcheting the suspense and terror factor of Hitchcock's psychological mind melts up to the nth degree.

Hermann is perhaps best remembered for the chilling, shocking, screeching strings of Psycho's iconic shower scene, but for this concert we will perform the equally memorable Suite from the Hitchcock's 1958 tale of obsession, Vertigo. We will also perform excerpts from Herrmann's score for Taxi Driver, Martin Scorcese's 1978 film about an outsider turned vigilante.

Good film music will always evoke the memory of the work it was written to be part of, but great film music can also stand on its own, simply as good music. I believe the scores we will present to you are all incredible in their own right - but they made the films they partnered immortal.

Tweet the orchestra on @BBCNOW, including the hashtag #bbcsoundofcinema and let us know your favourite film scores.

Tickets for America at the Movies, on Wednesday 18 September, can be booked by calling the Orchestra's Audience Line on 0800 052 1812, or visiting the St David's Hall website.


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