New Interview with Nicholas Hooper on Scoring Harry Potter Films
January 29, 2010, 08:12 PM
Warner Bros.' monthly Harry Potter newsletter has a brand new interview with Nicholas Hooper in which he talks about his experiences scoring "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" and "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix." In the interview Mr. Hooper comments that the journey to the cave was his favourite scene to score in the sixth film and that "[upon hearing] it performed by the huge orchestra and choir it felt like I had flown out there across the sea myself."
Mr. Hooper also discusses the similarities between some of the tracks on the scores of the fifth and sixth films, such as between the "Umbridge Theme" and "Living Death." Quotage:
[T]hey are both about new teachers. How will Slughorn turn out? Can we trust him? Another important theme from "Order of the Phoenix" that I used in "Half-Blood Prince" was the "Possession" theme (where Voldemort possesses Harry at the Ministry of Magic.) This pervades the score in most places where Voldemort or Tom Riddle are mentioned or shown: the first place being in the scene where Dumbledore gives his speech to the school at the beginning of term.
Sources of inspiration, a typical day of scoring a Harry Potter film and how the final recording all falls into place are also covered in the interview, which can be found here
I have to say that I find Hooper’s thematic connections very odd. I get the “new teacher” comparison, but referencing Umbridge’s theme because we’re supposed to be questioning Slughorn’s allegiance? Huh? That’s not even what the scene in question is about.
Hooper wasn’t bad, but I certainly will not miss him. I find his style generic and made-for-TV. It’s not that he needs to be bombastic; his 20-second string chords and constant glockenspiels just don’t hold my interest, and his thematic writing doesn’t even begin to match that of other film composers.
I liked quite a few of the HBP songs, but my very very very favorite was Farewell Aragog! My sister just played on the violin a few minutes ago, after dragging me by the arm from the piano. It was so gorgeous, my dad who was a level below us yelled up and told her to play it again! It’s so beautiful, it made me sad at the funeral, even tho Aragog had tried to eat Harry and Ron.
I didn’t really feel like the Order of the Phoenix score was good, but I absolutely loved the Half-Blood Prince score. I Love When Ginny Kissed Harry, Ginny, and In Noctem, and Journey To The Cave. Those four songs were absolutely genius. I am completely obsessed with them.
I wish John Williams could do part 2. Don’t get me wrong, I love Nicholas Hooper, but I just though, we need something more classical because its the end of the series.