21. August 2009 · Comments Off on Read Online · Categories: Read Online

I don’t really even have anything to say … just thought I’d post this … (Copeland was the drummer for The Police):

“I’m using instruments normally associated with classical music, Copeland said. “But I don’t write classical music — I live in the 21st century.”

And, it transpires, back in the first century as well.

At the time of this interview, he was in Dusseldorf, Germany, completing his orchestral score for “Ben Hur Live,” a multimillion-dollar stage production that opens in London next month. It features a cast of 400, along with five chariots, two galleons and 175 animals.

“It’s the whole movie, performed on stage, and I’m writing a two-hour monstrosity,” said Copeland, who studies orchestration with a professor at UCLA.

“The movie had a seminal score (by multiple Oscar-winner Miklos Rozsa). But like Jimi Hendrix’s use of the wah-wah pedal, it was copied by so many others that it’s hard to appreciate how revolutionary it was. Musically, I have a blank canvas.

“The script is in Arabic, Latin and Roman. For the English markets the tour visits, they talked me into being the narrator. The actors’ dialogue is pretty brief — ‘Masala, you (expletive)!’ ‘Judas, kiss my (expletive)!’ Then the narrator comes in, and says: ‘They disagreed.’?”

Copeland is the first Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee to earn a commission from SummerFest, which is seeking to feature more film composers. But he doubts his star power will matter much in a venue as small as Sherwood Auditorium.

“How much clout do you need to sell 490 tickets?” he quipped.

“There have always been rock ‘n’ roll dabblers in the classical world and there have always been classical players who wish they were rock stars, but I don’t think it’s a trend that’s gaining momentum. At various times, opera companies and orchestras say: ‘Look at all those kids going to rock concerts. How do we get some into our theater? Let’s get a rock star!’

“The critics generally don’t go for it. Because an underlying dynamic, which applies to every niche of art, is that you pay your dues. You work your way up, prove yourself and learn from the masters. But then some (expletive) out of left field comes out on stage, and the critics say: ‘This just isn’t right.’

“Well, I’m happy to be that (expletive).”

RTWT

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