Chapter

Music: Is Silence Golden?

Dean Keith Simonton

in Great Flicks

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199752034
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199894857 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199752034.003.0008
Music: Is Silence Golden?

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Is great music most likely to be heard in great films? To address this issue, two investigations were conducted. The first study focused on films, assessing how awards for best score and song are associated with other criteria of cinematic greatness. For the most part, awards in either music category appear irrelevant. The second study turned to film composers to see how the composers’ career trajectory corresponds with the quality of the films in which their music appears. When the composer is at his or her peak, will the score or song be found in a great film? The answer is negative. In fact, when the career trajectories are carefully analyzed, they seem strikingly similar to those of classical composers. The creativity of a film composer is not congruent with the creativity of the others involved in making the film.

Keywords: music; score; song; awards; composers; career trajectory

Chapter.  9986 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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