Pops Through the Projector

Pops Through the Projector

The Kenosha Pops Concert Band is performing music from the silver screen at this week’s concert.

“We are saluting classic movies,” said Craig Gall, the band’s musical director. He and Garrett Kornman, the band’s assistant conductor, will be acting as movie directors, taking the audience through familiar movie tunes.

The show — er, concert — will open with “Marcus Theatres,” a piece written by Marty Robinson, a friend of Gall’s, when they both were students at Lawrence University. This piece, Gall said, was written as an assignment for a music arranging class. “It will be recognizable to audience members who frequent Marcus Theatres” in Sturtevant and Gurnee, Ill., Gall said. Robinson
arranged the “theme” music that plays while theater patrons are being told to turn off their cell phones and hurry up and buy more popcorn before the movie starts.

The program will feature two medleys that highlight Hollywood favorites.

“Hooray for Hollywood,” arranged by Warren Barker, contains “Tara Theme” from “Gone with the Wind,” “Born Free” from the movie of the same name, the cartoon theme “Merrily We Roll Along,” the theme from “A Summer Place,” Al Jolson’s signature tune “Swanee” and “As Time Goes By” from the movie “Casablanca.”

The medley “The Sounds of Hollywood,” arranged by John Higgins, features songs from movies of the 1960s and ’70s: “Ready to take a Chance Again” from “Foul Play”; the theme from “The Odd Couple”; the title song from “Alfie”; and the theme songs from “Love Story” and “Wives and Lovers.”

Other pieces Gall is directing are:

–”Conquest,” from the 1947 Tyrone Power movie “Captain from Castile.” The lively musical score was composed by Alfred Newman and was nominated for an Academy Award. Newman gave the rights to the film’s spectacular march to the University of Southern California to use as theme music for the school’s football team. Popularly known as “Conquest,” the march is regularly performed by the university’s marching band, the Spirit of Troy, as a victory march. It is also the corps anthem of the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps.

– Highlights from “Exodus,” the epic (and lengthy!) 1960 film starring Paul Newman and Eva Marie Saint. The plot concerns the 1948 founding of the state of Israel. The film’s celebrated soundtrack music was written by Ernest Gold, who won the Academy Award for Best Original Score. Gold also won Best Soundtrack Album and Song of the Year at the Grammy Awards of 1961 for the soundtrack and theme to “Exodus,” respectively. It is the only instrumental song ever to receive that award to date.

– The theme from the 1962 movie “Lawrence of Arabia.” The score was composed by Maurice Jarre, who was given just six weeks to compose two hours of orchestral music. The score went on to garner Jarre his first Academy Award for Music
Score — Substantially Original and is now considered one of the greatest scores of all time, ranking No. 3 on the American Film Institute’s top 25 American film scores. Gall describes this piece as “a percussionists’ paradise.”

– “Parade of the Charioteers” from the 1959 film “Ben-Hur.” The score composed by Miklós Rózsa was highly influential on cinema for more than 15 years and is the longest ever composed for a motion picture.

– Composer John Williams’ marches from various “Star Wars” films, including the main theme from the first movie; “Parade of the Ewoks” from “Return of the Jedi,” “The Imperial March” from “The Empire Strikes Back” and “Augie’s Great Municipal Band” from “The Phantom Menace.”

– “Long Ago (and Far Away)” by Jerome Kern and Ira Gershwin. Master of ceremonies Greg Berg will sing this piece, from the movie “Cover Girl,” a 1944 American musical starring Rita Hayworth and Gene Kelly.

Berg is also singing “Over the Rainbow,” Harold Arlen’s song from the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz.”

Kornman is directing that piece, along with:

– “Can You Read My Mind?” from the 1978 movie “Superman.”

– “The Way We Were,” the title song from the 1973 movie starring Barbra Streisand and Robert Redford. The song was written by Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman, scored by Marvin Hamlisch, and performed by Streisand. It won the Academy Award
and Golden Globe for Best Song and also made AFI’s list of Top 100 Songs from Film, ranking No. 8.

– “The Godfather Trilogy,” a medley of movie songs, though Kornman points out, “it’s really just music from the first two ‘Godfather’ movies. Everyone wants to forget all about ‘The Godfather Part III.’”

The program also features two pieces — the German march “Berliner Luft” and the “Vienna Forever” march — that were held over from last week’s “European Tour” concert, which was cut short by heavy rains. “These pieces are being played in anticipation of German Fest, which opens Thursday in Milwaukee,” Gall says, adding that the entire “European Holiday” program will be repeated next summer.

If you go

What: The Kenosha Pops Band’s “Classic Cinema” concert

When: 7 p.m. Wednesday (July 25, 2012)

Where: The band shell in Pennoyer Park, at 35th Street and Seventh Avenue on Kenosha’s lakefront

Admission: Free

Next concert:

“Dynamic Duos: The Pops Celebrates Some of the Greatest Musical Pairings of the 20th Century” on Aug. 1, 2012

Also: During the performances, the Pops Band operates a concession stand, offering popcorn, candy, soda and water. Also, parking is allowed on both sides of Seventh Avenue durings Pops concerts.

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