A 'Star Trek' Journey, in Memory of Leonard Nimoy

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Saturday, March 07, 2015

Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Spock in the original 'Star Trek' TV series. Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Spock in the original 'Star Trek' TV series. (Publicity photo)

In honor of the late Leonard Nimoy, who compellingly played the character Mr. Spock, David Garland presents music from the first six "Star Trek" movies, plus music from the original series, including scores by Jerry Goldsmith, James Horner, Leonard Rosenman, Cliff Eidelman and Gerald Fried. Nimoy died Feb. 27 at age 83.

The original "Star Trek" TV show ran just three seasons, from 1966 until 1969. During the next ten years the show gained fans while in syndication, and in 1979, this television phenomenon decided to boldly go where it hadn't gone before: the silver screen. "Star Trek: The Motion Picture" was the first of many films to enlarge on the characters and stories, and to increase the budget for special effects and music. Scores from the original series have a charm of their own, and the "Star Trek" film scores allowed a big orchestral sound to enter the Trek universe.

This episode features material from a previous show that ran in June 2012.

Comments [11]

David Garland from WQXR Studio

@Andrew and @Ellen, I don't know if "Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun" was used on Star Trek, but I don't think so. The music for "Shore Leave" was by Gerald Fried, and his tender theme included on this program for it's use in the episode "This Side of Paradise" (in which Spock shows his human side), was originally composed for "Shore Leave." There was indeed some classical harpsichord music heard once in the series, as you point out. It was a sonata by Domenico Scarlatti.

Mar. 08 2015 02:52 PM
TXC from Sutton Place South

From Bizet's "Carmen" to "Star Trek" in one day. Good job, WQXR!

Mar. 07 2015 09:20 PM
Adam Matlock

Fantastic. The music in the TV series was classic 60s style - full of harmonic tension with only occasional release. The films only occasionally got it right, but I'd say that James Horner's score for The Wrath of Khan hit the nail pretty close to the head. I covered his "Spock (Dies)" cues on accordion in tribute to Nimoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2yVZ9xOKmc

Mar. 07 2015 05:30 PM
Ellen from West Chester, PA

Sorry, Concetta, I did not know Nimoy was a literal "cat person." I am one, myself, though I have none currently. And kudos to WQXR and whoever reads these posts. The Dr. Spock error has been corrected. A final word to Andrew, in the Squire of Gothos episode, William Campbell at the harpsichord does play something distinctly classical, though I cannot identify it.

Mar. 06 2015 05:47 PM
concetta nardone from Nassau

@Ellen: not going anywhere with this. Just a general comment I read on Facebook. Believe it was Jackson Galaxy from My Cat from Hell who posted it as well as some of fotos of Mr. Nimoy with cats.

Mar. 06 2015 03:42 PM
Ellen from West Chester, PA

I'm not sure where you are going with this, Concetta. Certainly the Spock character had feline characteristics, obvious to all. What does that have to do with some tenuous connection between people who like both cats and music? That would be a rather large group, speaking logically, as Mr. Spock would have. Just not sure what any of that has to do with an appreciation of Leonard Nimoy and the Star Trek music.

Mar. 06 2015 02:09 PM
Concetta Nardone from Nassau

Mr. Nimoy was a cat person. This is on Facebook. I am writing this because there is a blog going on about music for cats. and all the dotty dears who love cats, including myself.

Mar. 06 2015 01:49 PM
Ellen from West Chester, PA

Sharp eyes, Sevans. That mistake was not uncommon early on, when the baby doctor's book was the child care bible.

Mar. 06 2015 11:11 AM
Ellen from United States

Andrew, according to Wikipedia, the Shore Leave episode did have original music scored just for that episode, credit given to Gerald Fried. There certainly were passages that sounded influenced by Debussy, but I do not detect any actual Debussy. It was one of my favorite episodes. As a Trekker since the first episode of the original series, I will certainly be listening on Saturday night. Thank you, David Garland.

Mar. 06 2015 10:35 AM

The picture caption refers to Leonard Nimoy as Dr. Spock. The character is MR. Spock.

Mar. 06 2015 10:31 AM
Andrew from North Brunswick, NJ

Am I mistaken, or did the original Star Trek series use actual classical pieces? I can't shake the impression of repeatedly hearing Debussey's Prelude to Afternoon of a Faun during one of the "shore leave" episodes where people from the character's pasts keep popping up, including Kirk's early love, Ruth.

There are others which I can't bring to mind right now.

Mar. 06 2015 08:12 AM

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