WASO and the Lord of the Rings


Peter Jackson’s epic movie version of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is supported by some of the greatest film music of all time. Howard Shore’s Academy Award-winning score helps to capture the film’s sweeping emotion and thrilling scenery.

Next month, the West Australian Symphony Orchestra will be turning down the movie soundtrack and providing the music live through the power of a full symphony orchestra and the massed voices of the WASO Chorus and St George’s Cathedral Choristers at their Lord of the Rings performances.

Following the success of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s concert version of The Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, WASO presents film director Peter Jackson’s vision of JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. This epic event features the entire film on screen accompanied live by WASO, the WASO Chorus and St George’s Cathedral Choristers.

The Academy Award-winning score by Howard Shore is instantly recognisable to film aficionados and music lovers alike; and magically captures the film’s sweeping emotion, spell-binding visuals and the danger-filled adventures of Frodo Baggins and his cohorts in their quest to end the reign of the Dark Lord and save Middle Earth.

The venue for this event, the Riverside Theatre, has been chosen, in part, to accommodate the 6 metre by 14.5 metre screen required for the projection of the film above the full orchestra on stage. This has required some adaptation by the orchestra as well – because stage lighting would interfere with the projection of the film, individual lights are attached to each music stand so the players can read the music in the otherwise dark auditorium.

Swiss-born conductor, Ludwig Wicki, is ideally suited to lead with WASO through this towering soundtrack. He and Howard Shore are long-term collaborators; and Wicki conducted the world premiere of The Fellowship of the Ring in 2008.

David Cotgreave is the Production and Technical Manager with WASO and he dropped in for a chat on my radio program today to talk about just how such a major project comes together. You can hear our chat by clicking the play button on the audio player below.

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