Sensational Maurice Jarre score from landmark TV event gets mammoth world premiere 3-CD set! Legendary 1980 12-hour mini-series airing for five consecutive nights on NBC grabbed gigantic ratings that were second only to Roots. Many celebrated names became attached to top-drawer production: Director Jerry London, screen writer/producer Eric Bercovici, cameraman Andrew Laszlo, actors Richard Chamberlain, Toshiro Mifune, narrator Orson Welles, famed author James Clavell – and – Oscar-winning composer Maurice Jarre. Set during 1600’s, Jarre launches sprawling journey with Englishman Blackthorne (Chamberlain) and crew of the Erasmus blown off course, landing in village of Anjiro, heading deep into Japan and dramatically different culture – Jarre leading all the way. Tensions, captivity, meeting with powerful Toranaga, romance, earthquake, elevation to rank of Samurai, hostage crisis, assassin attacks, many other events become part of Blackthorne’s experiences, with all of them highlighted by magnificent orchestral music! Ultimately two confrontational civilizations are joined in stirring manner and Jarre wraps his score in powerhouse fortissimo manner. Highlight abound throughout all five parts: exciting Main Title, initial meeting with Toranaga, richly beautiful love theme for Mariko, dramatic prison sequence, intense earthquake cue, many many more. Jarre scores epic work for equally large orchestra. Spotlight often goes to huge brass section with emphasis on stunning low trombone and tuba colors. Percussion flavors also abound. Jarre’s forte for ethnic scoring shines as well with sounds of the shamisen, biwa, koto, shakuhachi and taiko drums. In fact, every instrumental family of the symphony orchestra is given tour-de-force writing! RSO label issued a 38-minute LP of highlights with pinched sound in 1980 (subsequently premiered on CD by Intrada) but discovery of original 2” 16-track session masters allows world premiere new stereo mix of all five parts of mini-series, including all-new mastering of original album plus bumpers, source pieces and wealth of alternates – over 230 minutes of music in audio quality never-before-heard! Easily amongst the most ambitious scores by Maurice Jarre ever written. Recorded by Garry Ulmer over span of three months (late May – early August 1980) at Paramount Studios Recording Stage M in Hollywood. Entire 3-disc project produced by Lukas Kendall, John Takis. Latter offers informative liner notes on film production, scoring. Assistant to Maurice Jarre: Richard Bowden. Maurice Jarre composes, conducts.
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