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Music and the Silver Screen: A History of Iconic Film Scores

Writer: Tara Isachenko / September 2023


Cinema, since its inception, has always relied on a blend of visual and auditory stimuli to engage its audience. Within this cinematic symphony, one element, often subtly working in the background yet undeniably significant, is the film score. From the earliest silent films, which were often accompanied by a live piano, to the grand orchestral compositions in modern blockbusters, music has always played an integral role in shaping the cinematic experience. In this issue, I aim to highlight the role of music in cinema, tracing its history and impact through some iconic film scores.

In the early days of cinema, when films were silent, music served as the primary auditory enhancement to the on-screen visuals. Live musicians were employed to play music in the theater, creating an atmosphere that complemented the narrative. These artists had the challenging task of providing an aural backdrop to the silent drama, and they did so with an intuitive understanding of rhythm, emotion, and drama. During this period, music was considered a critical but separate component, underlining the emotional trajectory of the narrative but not directly linked to the film's storyline...


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