Bernard Herrmann's The Ghost and Mrs. Muir : A Film Score Guide


Author David Cooper examines the career of Bernard Herrmann, as well as the specific elements that went into the creation of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir's score. Cooper traces the development of Herrmann's craft as a film composer, especially through his radio work, where he made contact with Orson Welles, which led to his first film score, Citizen Kane. In this guide, Cooper considers Herrmann's musical technique and offers a theorization of some of the ways in which music can be "meaningful" in film. A quantitative, evidence-based study of the score is provided, in which, the extent to which Herrmann adopted screenwriter Philip Dunne's suggestions for music in the screenplay are discussed. A rundown of all the cues found in Herrmann's manuscript is followed by an examination of the score as a musicological artifact, and in his evaluation of the overall approach to the soundtrack, the author considers the musical detail of the score's structure, its themes and their orchestration. He also explores non-musical contexts of the film, including the screenplay's relationship to the popular novel from which it was adapted, as well as the contribution of director Joseph L. Mankiewicz and the performances of Gene Tierney and Rex Harrison. Cooper's thoughtful assessment of Herrmann's score is a fine tribute to this major work by a great and influential composer.


Mr David Cooper
Paperback | 192 pages
140 x 214 x 13mm | 268g
Publication date
30 Aug 2005
Scarecrow Press
Publication City/Country
Lanham, MD, United States
Bestsellers rank