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Toward a Prehistory of Film Music: Hans Erdmann’s Score for Nosferatu and the Idea of Modular Form
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Musicology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8448-2080
2013 (English)In: The Journal of Film Music, ISSN 1087-7142, E-ISSN 1758-860X, Vol. 6, no 1, p. 31-48Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Photoplay music is a genre that took shape during the “silent” period of cinema when extended narrative films became mass entertainment. Many photoplay pieces exhibit certain structural features that we propose to conceptualize as modular form: they consist of several brief segments (often indicated by double barlines andnumbers) that are easy to rearrange and flexible in themselves. Hans Erdmann’s Fantastisch-romantische Suite, derived from his original Nosferatu score, is such a set of musical modules designed to accompany various films in ad hoc arrangements—a purpose supported not only by numerous breaking points but also by their harmonic, syntactic and textural design. While modular techniques persisted in the era of sound film well after 1930, they also continued certain practices of theatrical music of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, such as compilation and quick arrangement of stock pieces in ballet, vaudeville, pantomime, and spoken drama.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 6, no 1, p. 31-48
Keyword [en]
film music
National Category
Musicology
Research subject
Musicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-338242DOI: 10.1558/jfm.v6i1.31OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-338242DiVA, id: diva2:1171823
Available from: 2018-01-08 Created: 2018-01-08 Last updated: 2018-02-14Bibliographically approved

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Plebuch, Tobias

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