This class will explore the role of soundtrack and score in musicals and movies, and use Garage Band to create their own short individual themes in response to a movie scene which they will watch minus the sound element. First, however, the students need to become aware of how orchestration can be used to manipulate or heighten a mood; convey cultural identity; establish setting and situation; and even to introduce characters! To introduce students to this concept, they will listen to various soundtrack and musical excerpts (including West Side Story) and guess what they are “about,” then watch the film or stage play scene with the sound and evaluate their expectations vs. the actual movie. Students will also do the reverse, watching excerpts of heavily scored movies without the sound and guessing what orchestration might be used, and why, depending on the content of the scene watched; then watch the film with the sound and compare their suggestions with the choices the composers actually made. In this way, students should be able to explain why we use soundtracks in films; why some stories are made into musicals rather than just spoken plays; and how and why instrumental timbre generates emotional response.
Leslie is introducing “Adventurous Chuck”, her Anime character. Prior to composing and writing their stories, the teaching artist asked the students to discuss in writing a character asset associated with their anime creations that could also be a flaw. Leslie’s essay regarding this is above. Students were also invited to discuss that issue with regard to their own personalities.