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Bernard Herrmann: Psycho Original Movie Score

Artist: Bernard Herrmann
Title: Psycho Original Movie Score

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Bernard Herrmann: Psycho Original Movie Score

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1. Product Details

Psycho The Original Film Score Bernard Herrmann - Hitchcock insisted that Bernard Herrmann write the score for Psycho despite the composers refusal to accept a reduced fee for the films lower budget. The resulting score according to Christopher Palmer in The Composer in Hollywood 1990 is perhaps Herrmanns most spectacular Hitchcock achievement.Hitchcock was pleased with the tension and drama the score added to the film later remarking 33 of the effect of Psycho was due to the music.The singular contribution of Herrmanns score may be inferred from the unusual penultimate placement of the composers name in the films opening credit sequence as it is followed only by Hitchcocks directing credit. Herrmann used the lowered music budget to his advantage by writing for a string orchestra rather than a full symphonic ensemble contrary to Hitchcocks request for a jazz score. He thought of the single tone color of the all-string soundtrack as a way of reflecting the black-and-white cinematography of the film. The strings play con sordini with a muting device placed across the bridge for all the music other than the shower scene creating a darker and more intense effect. Hollywood composer Fred Steiner in an analysis of the score to Psycho points out that string instruments gave Herrmann access to a wider range in tone dynamics and instrumental special effects than any other single instrumental group would have. The main title music a tense hurtling piece sets the tone of impending violence and returns three times on the soundtrack. Though nothing shocking occurs during the first 15-20 minutes of the film the title music remains in the audiences mind lending tension to these early scenes. Herrmann also maintains tension through the slower moments in the film through the use of ostinato. There were rumors that Herrmann had used electronic means including amplified bird screeches to achieve the shocking effect of the music in the shower scene. The effect was achieved however only with violins in a screeching stabbing sound-motion of extraordinary viciousness.The only electronic amplification employed was in the placing of the microphones close to the instruments to get a harsher sound. Besides the emotional impact the shower scene cue ties the soundtrack to birds. The association of the shower scene music with birds also telegraphs to the audience that it is Norman the stuffed-bird collector who is the murderer rather than his mother.

1.1 A1 Prelude and Dawn
1.2 A2A the City
1.3 A2B Marion
1.4 A2C Marion and Sam
1.5 A3 Temptation
1.6 A4A Flight
1.7 A4B the Patrol Car
1.8 A4C the Car Lot
1.9 A4D the Package
1.10 A4E the Rainstorm
1.11 A5A Hotel Room
1.12 A5B the Window
1.13 A5C the Parlour
1.14 A6 the Madhouse
1.15 A7 the Peephole
2.1 B1A the Bathroom
2.2 B1B the Murder
2.3 B1C the Body
2.4 B2A the Office
2.5 B2B the Curtain
2.6 B2C the Water
2.7 B2D the Car
2.8 B2E the Swamp
2.9 B3A the Search A
2.10 B3B the Shadow
2.11 B3C Phone Booth
2.12 B4A the Porch
2.13 B4B the Stairs
2.14 B4C the Knife
2.15 B5A the Search B
2.16 B5B First Floor
2.17 B5C Cabin 10
2.18 B5D Cabin 1
2.19 B6A the Hill
2.20 B6B the Bedroom
2.21 B6C the Toys
2.22 B6D the Cellar
2.23 B6E Discovery
2.24 B7 Finale

H 0.13
W 10.56
L 12.27

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We offer a 30-day money back guarantee on all products purchased from All items must be returned as new in their original packaging, including all accessories and cables. Missing items will be charged based on suggested retail prices. All returns must be accompanied by a valid return authorization number (RMA) issued by Victrola. If an RMA is not obtained prior to shipping, the returned product will be refused and returned to sender. Shipping cost is not refundable and returns must be shipped prepaid by the customer. There is a 15% restocking fee that will be calculated based on the price of the product once the item is refunded. 

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