27 May

The Film & TV Music Of Angela Morley

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JOHN WILSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA

THE FILM & TELEVISION MUSIC OF ANGELA MORLEY

"The Slipper and the Rose": Introduction, Waltz, Transformation Music, Wedding March
Theme from the TV film "Madame X"
"When Eight Bells Toll": theme
A Tender Mood
"The Looking Glass War": theme
White Wing – from TV series "Hotel"
Snow Ride
"Dynasty": Blues for Alexis
Rotten Row
My Autumn Love
A Canadian in Mayfair
"Watership Down": Venturing Forth, Through the Woods, Kehaar’s Theme, Final Struggle and Triumph
"Captain Nemo and the Undersea City": suite

Vocalion CDSA6807

In her own notes to this CD, Angela Morley explains her choice of music selected, and some of the influences which caused it to be composed. The film score for "The Slipper and the Rose" (which tells the story of Cinderella) is the only part of the album which is not entirely composed by Angela, although one has to observe that the melodies by Richard and Robert Sherman gained considerably from Angela’s magical touches.

Actually some of the music for the film was specially written by Angela, such as the Transformation Music, which accompanies the scene where drab little Cinderella is transformed into an elegant princess. Also the Wedding March, which was played in the film on a church organ.

Happily Angela has included several of her compositions for the Recorded Music Library of her main London publishers, Chappell & Co. These include A Tender Mood, Snow Ride, Rotten Row and the piece which launched her career as a composer – A Canadian in Mayfair. She recalls: "I took a favourite piece of mine, Portrait of a Flirt by my idol and mentor Robert Farnon. Emptying its ‘mould’ of the Flirt, I poured in the elements of the Canadian! I showed this example of my audacity to the master and, expecting a sharp reprimand, was asked instead if I would like it to be recorded and published by Chappell! It is dedicated to Robert Farnon. This score was unavailable and had to be reconstructed during the weeks before this recording. My apologies to purists who detect slight differences from the original version. I simply didn’t have the time to make an exact transcription."

Film buffs will be glad to have Captain Nemo and the Undersea City available at long last. Angela has compiled a suite which includes the main theme, followed by music which represents Nemo’s noble vision. This leads to the music behind the reading of Senator Fraser’s apology for having escaped from the city in the stolen submarine Nautilus II. Here the main theme and Nemo’s theme are combined. Lastly we hear the music for the ascent of the escapees to the surface of the ocean, leading to a reprise of the main title.

Among some other gems are Blues for Alexis (based on a compilation of themes that Angela wrote for the Joan Collins character in the TV series ‘Dynasty’), and White Wing from another US TV series ‘Hotel’. My Autumn Love was composed for Rediffusion in the 1970s, and Angela conducted it on several occasions around that time with the BBC Radio Orchestra.

We are all familiar with Angela Morley’s brilliant compositions, and her superb arrangements for both vocal and orchestral albums. This fine CD also rightly confirms her credentials as one of the leading film and television writers of her generation.

David Ades

This Vocalion CD is available from all good record stores. It can also be purchased by members of the Robert Farnon Society from the RFS Record Service for £13 [US $26] plus postage and packing.

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About Geoff 123
Geoff Leonard was born in Bristol. He spent much of his working career in banking but became an independent record producer in the early nineties, specialising in the works of John Barry and British TV theme compilations.
He also wrote liner notes for many soundtrack albums, including those by John Barry, Roy Budd, Ron Grainer, Maurice Jarre and Johnny Harris. He co-wrote two biographies of John Barry in 1998 and 2008, and is currently working on a biography of singer, actor, producer Adam Faith.
He joined the Internet Movie Data-base (www.imdb.com) as a data-manager in 2001 and looked after biographies, composers and the music-department, amongst other tasks. He retired after nine years loyal service in order to continue writing.