Good Dog!

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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Dogs make great cinematic heroes. They're the perfect protagonists for the classic movie story themes of courage, hope and loyalty. Plus, they're cute, charming, furry and speak a language everyone understands.

The Westminster Dog Show may be over but invite your pet to "sit!" and listen as Movies on the Radio goes to the dogs. David Garland presents music from great dog movies--music with just the right frisky-factor to depict canine playfulness, as well as the drama of dangerous situations and happy reunions.

We hear from "Marley & Me," "Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey," and other recent dog movies, but the centerpiece of the show is the extraordinary five-CD set of "Lassie" film scores released by Film Score Monthly. From that set we hear from "Lassie Come Home," "Courage of Lassie," and more, featuring music by composers such as Daniele Amfitheatrof, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco and André Previn, scored for symphony orchestra and the famous collie's barks and yips.

Lassie Come Home (1943) trailer:

Comments [6]

Peter Weis from Long Island

Very cool episode David. @ David Bundler I think it might depend on the dogs natural range. I new some one with a basset hound that would howl along with him as he play baritone horn and tuba. Some one should do a study on that. I would imagine dogs would have soprano, alto, tenor and bass voices similar to humans.

BTW. David I had heard about the Bernard Herrmann film festival on your show. Thank you so much. As a person in my mid 30's it is rare to get to see films like Vertigo and The Birds in an actual movie theater. Watching film in a movie theater is such an important part of the experience. My wife and I have become regulars at the NY Film Forum now. I'm hoping some John Ford films will turn up there.

Feb. 19 2012 01:28 AM
Mary Heller from Poughkeepsie

Once upon a time when Lassie was on TV we watched the show with our kids and of course with our dog Flicka. One morning after having watched the show the night before I saw Flicka sitting up and begging in front of the TV! OK that seemed just a little hokey and then I noticed a bug crawling across the screen. But without that little detail it made such a great story.

Feb. 18 2012 10:03 PM
yichihara from NJ

Yes, David, I, too, used to watch the TV show Lassie when I was little and in Japan. How can I forget about Timmy as well as Lassie??? But I did not know about the movie, Lassie Come Home. Thank you for letting me know about it. I hope I can find the film and watch it somewhere.

Feb. 18 2012 09:19 PM
David S Bundler

Dogs have the ability to hear music everywhere, all the time, (humans fill their heads with chatter and miss most of this) what do you think a cars engine sounds like, or footsteps, or the rustle of the food bag, or cookie box? Whether they sit with cocked head, or roll their eyes with chin on the floor, they are always listening. Due to the extended hearing range I find most dogs prefer Respighi and Richard Strauss, at moderate volume, (as far as it comes to humans communicating through noise). They do seem to prefer to sing along to sopranos, altos, and emergency sirens, I think this is more from an understanding of their tessitura. As I have never heard one singing a Russian bass solo, and rightly so.

Feb. 17 2012 11:10 PM
WQXR

@Cara,

If you hit the "Like" button at the top of the story, it will post to your Facebook page with the Lassie photo. I hope that helps.

Feb. 17 2012 11:29 AM
Cara De Silva from New York, NY

I wanted to post this on Facebook, but with the picture of Lassie (to draw listeners) and the article. However, it was impossible. I tried three or four times. Didn't work. This should be up so the picture can come with it. Very frustrating. No point in posting this with a photograph of Armiliato, which is what kept happening.

Feb. 17 2012 10:55 AM

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