Premiere release of powerful Laurence Rosenthal score for David Susskind production!
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Premiere release of powerful Laurence Rosenthal score for David Susskind production! Impressive cast populates dramatic 1961 film set during aftermath of Cristero War, a violent peasant revolt pitting Mexico’s government against influences of Roman Catholic Church. Film today is oddly obscure, a mystery given its cast of celebrated actors: The incomparable Laurence Olivier in the lead, George C. Scott, Roddy Mcdowall, Julie Harris, Patty Duke, Keenan Wynn all in prominent roles. Graham Greene’s controversial 1940 novel was the basis for Susskind’s production. Composer Rosenthal enjoyed a strong relationship with producer Susskind that began in 1959 with Rashomon on Broadway. The 1961-1962 era saw Rosenthal scoring not only The Power And The Glory but also such landmark films as A Raisin In The Sun, Requiem For A Heavyweight and The Miracle Worker. The composer needed to score Power And Glory from multiple aspects of the drama: The Communist revolution in Mexico of the 1930’s, an intense power struggle between government and church, Olivier’s broken priest, betrayal, pursuit by a driven lieutenant, imprisonment, execution - all parts of writer Greene’s explosive story. Rosenthal launched in a powerful mode he himself describes as a “little sentimental Mexican tune played by two searing trumpets in thirds followed by pounding percussive rhythms” which serves to underline the desperation of the Communist revolution of the period. The melody anchors both front and close of the score in dynamic, strident full orchestral manner but also plays in much subtler guise, at one point stated simply by solo French horn and at another point by solo guitar. Rosenthal also affords another theme, sadly wistful and romantic in context, speaking for the fugitive priest’s haunted memories of leaving behind both mistress and daughter. Other prominent musical ideas highlight the score, including music for Roddy McDowall’s “mestizo” character and aggressive material for George C. Scott’s terrifying and relentless pursuer, a brutal motif that the composer describes as a “juggernaut”. Quite literally, Rosenthal’s score offers drama, color, flavor and power to burn! The entire 50-minute CD was mastered from what are probably the only surviving 1/4” mono masters, vaulted by Rosenthal himself. Fortuitously, he also maintained his original sketches and some scoring notes, allowing us to preserve and present the cues in the order he intended for the film. Informative notes by John Takis with new contributions from the composer, who regards this score as one of his own personal favorites. Handsome package design by Kay Marshall. Laurence Rosenthal composes, orchestrates, conducts. Intrada Special Collection CD available while quantities and interest remain!
12. Prison (3:50) 13. Montage (5:37) 14. The Church (1:10) 15. Celebration (1:10) 16. The Trap (2:30) 17. The Hut (1:30) 18. The Power And The Glory (2:38) 19. The Refusal (1:22) 20. Prayer (0:43) 21. The Execution And End Title (4:04)