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Music in Film

Course Overview

Music has been an integral part of film since the creation of talking pictures. Prior to that, film was a silent concept, but has since evolved with the creation of theatres and vaudevilles. In this class, we will look at the evolution of music in film from the 1930s to contemporary film. We will understand the importance of concepts such as leitmotifs, full music scores, diegetic music, the influence of romanticism in film, and many others, all of which contributed to the different styles of films scores. We will not only learn about these scores, but will listen to, analyze, and critically dissect the music to better understand how it has impacted our perception of movies. The students will be able to understand and be able to place into context film music using correct terminology and facts. Students will also be able grasp the overall history and trends in the development of film music. And lastly, students be able to think critically about film and use correct terminology in its assessment.

Course Content

  • Students will be able identify the characteristics and tendencies of film music from each decade of the 20th century to present.
  • Students will be able to identify the role that music plays in key scenes in selected representative films.
  • Students will be able to analyze films with variety of lenses to see how the composer invokes different techniques identified in class.