Waterfront

Topics: LifeChange

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Last updated: April 3, 2019

The main theme in on the Waterfront is far more memorable than the themes in Planet of the Apes, as Planet of the Apes relies more on a rhythmic energy than on melody. However, despite the different style of themes used, similar compositional techniques are employed.On the Waterfront begins with a theme based on the blues scale in the horns. At bar 7, it is treated in fugue by the flutes (in octaves) and trombone and then repeated but altered by trumpets from bars 13 to 18 with the clarinets ending it at bar 20.

In the first 20 bars, fugue, changes of instrumentation and repetition have been used.Next a more rhythmic orientated theme is introduced involving the timps, piano and other percussion playing quaver based ostinatoes. At bar 42, the alto sax solos over the ostinatoes using semitones and perfect fourths. At bar 54, the wood wind repeat the theme but the note values have been diminished.At bar 64 another theme is introduced using 2 semiquavers followed by long sustained or trilled notes.

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This is repeated at different pitches and intervalically altered as is the length of sustained note. During the repetitions, a crescendo is implemented.At bar 78 ff has been reached and the entire orchestra plays exactly the same quaver based rhythm and many parts such as the entire woodwind section are exactly the same. All parts are given very similar versions of the theme to show that a climax has been reached.At bar 88, the violins play a similar theme to the alto sax at bar 42. The piece builds to another climax to end on with the stings playing a sustained chord and the rest of the orchestra all playing exactly the same semiquaver rhythm with more doubling of parts.In Planet of the Apes, for a large proportion of the piece, many instruments have exactly the same rhythmically if not melodically and doubling of parts is used such at bar 1 oboes 1 and 3.

The piano riff of bar 4 is a key component of the rest of the score. It is extended in bar 8 and 9.At bar 11, the violin plays a sustained note which is immediately answered by a 3 note fragment on the flutes, piccolo and tuned percussion. This is repeated at bar 15 at a different pitch and intervalically altered.Bar 1 to 8, has three bars of a full texture followed by a solo instrument (the piano) for one bar and then repeated; this structure is used again in bars 23 to 31. Bars 11 – 22 of the piano part use a 1 bar quaver based repeating ostinato and all bars are exactly the same.

The upper woodwind part at bar 23 is intervalically the same as the piano riff from bar 4 so the theme is being rescored.The piano part from bars 45 to 52 is repeating the ostinato from bar 11 but a fourth higher and extended due to not being in 3/4 any more. It is then reused again at bar 59 – 74.

At bar 64, the muted trumpets and xylophone reuse the previous violin and xylophone theme from bar 11, this is another change in instrumentation.Both pieces feature similar treatment of themes such as the use of repetition, rescoring and intervalicalic alterations. Both also use repeating driving rhythms and ostinatoes as key features.

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