20
November 2020
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Cue of the Week: “Night Passions”

This mid-film cue from Lady Usher accompanies a complex scene where tenderness turns to passion, and then… something disturbing.

Thematically, this cue introduces a melody for the main couple’s relationship. This theme will recur as the tension mounts, and Morgan and Roderick start to face tough decisions about their future.

30
October 2020
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Cue of the Week: “To Resting Comfortably”

This week’s music from the score for Lady Usher accompanies a classic “plot thickens” scene. We hear a reprise of the Lady’s theme, then a dark dance which underscores the increasingly-creepy dialogue about the Usher family.

Sorry… I meant to say the award-winning score for Lady Usher. I’m pleased to share that the music won Best Original Score at the New York Cinematography Awards competition. Read the details here!

26
October 2020
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“Lady Usher” wins Best Score award

I’m pleased to announce that my score for Lady Usher won Best Original Score from the New York Cinematography Awards competition. Continued gratitude to writer/director George Adams for the opportunity to collaborate on this feature, and for supporting the use of live musicians in film music.

A soundtrack album release for the score is in the works. In the meantime you can hear excerpts in my Cue of the Week blog.

23
October 2020
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Cue of the Week: “The Lady Arrives”

The centerpiece of the score for Lady Usher is the theme for the film’s titular antagonist, the domineering and manipulative Lady. This cue heralds her arrival with a lyrical but edgy melody, which will serve as her leitmotif for the rest of the story.

In short order the music shifts to an impish tango, echoing the back-and-forth verbal sparring between Morgan and her new prospective mother-in-law.

25
September 2020
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Cue of the Week: “The Foyer”

This week’s music from Lady Usher is short but sweet. Well, short but macabre. Once the heroine has entered the Usher domain, the visuals become dark and oppressive, and the music shifts accordingly.

One great thing about a string quartet is the ability to convey agitation in a very intimate, almost claustrophobic way. (Whereas a full string section sounds both richer and more distanced, by nature.) We’ll hear more of this sound as we continue into the creepier parts of the score.

18
September 2020
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Cue of the Week: “Arriving at the House of Usher”

In this moody cue from the film Lady Usher, Morgan arrives at the foreboding mansion of … well, see the title. The score’s string quartet is joined by harp, adding a hint of delicacy to the disquieting setting.

The romance theme introduced earlier recurs throughout, here more subdued in its hopefulness. (Spoiler alert: at this point in the film, the carefree times are behind us.)

04
September 2020
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Cue of the Week: “Departing by Train”

After saying goodbye to her bestie, Morgan hops on a train to pursue her troubled boyfriend Roderick, who has mysteriously disappeared into the House of Usher. (Sound familiar?)

This music accompanies the departure with a mini-scherzo for string quartet — optimistic and determined, but with some agitation. The mood turns creepier as Morgan emerges onto a desolate, dusty road.

(Sharp-eared obsessives will notice a minor-mode restatement of Morgan’s theme from the prior “Romance” cue.)

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