Pops at the Picture Show

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The movie poster for 'Raintree County.'

Sometimes the real star of the silver screen is the score. During the golden age of Hollywood, everyone from classical composers to Broadway songwriters would try their hand at writing large-scale compositions for motion pictures. What they created was the foundation of the pops sound.

On this episode of American Pops, Michael Feinstein features some of his favorite orchestral pieces originally written for film, but that stand alone as concert works. The program includes Johnny Green’s Overture from "Raintree County,"  Milkos Rozsa’s theme to Hitchcock’s "Spellbound" and Korngold’s score to "The Constant Nymph."

Program playlist:

Leroy Anderson: Belle of the Ball
BBC Concert Orchestra and Leonard Slatkin
Album Title: Orchestral Music I

Johnny Green: Overture from “Raintree County”
Johnny Green, Conductor; The M-G-M Studio Orchestra
Album Title: Raintree County (Soundtrack)
Film Score Monthly  FSMCD Vol. 9 Number 19

Ralph Rainger: Opening from “The Big Broadcast Of 1937”– Allegretto
Ralph Rainger, Piano; Boris Morros, Conductor; Paramount Recording Orchestra
10” 78RPM -  Private RCA Pressing 97438

Franz Waxman: Tristan and Isolde Fantasy from “Humoresque”
Leonard Slatkin, Conductor; BBC Concert Orchestra
Album Title: The Golden Age Of Hollywood
BBC Music Magazine  BBC MM234

Erich Wolfgang Korngold: Tomorrow from “The Constant Nymph”
Charles Gerhardt, Conductor; The National Symphony Orchestra
Album Title: The Sea Hawk- Classic Film Scores of Erich Wolfgang Korngold
RCA-BMG 60863-2-RG

Harry Warren: American Barcarolle
Meredith Willson, conducting his Orchestra
Album Title: Modern American Music
Decca 291

David Raksin: Main Title from “Forever Amber”
David Raksin, Conductor; The New Philharmonia Orchestra
Album Title: David Raksin Conducts His Great Film Scores
RCA Red Seal  781268

Johnny Green: Serenade For A New Baby
Johnny Green, Conductor; M-G-M Studio Orchestra
Album Title: Johnny Green On The Hollywood Sound Stage
12” LP  MGM E3694

Miklos Rozsa: Spellbound Concerto
Leonard Pennario, Piano; Mikos Rozsa, Conductor; Hollywood Bowl Orchestra
Album Title: The Movies Go To The Hollywood Bowl
Angel EMI  63735