Film scoring/Score home wrecker

Interesting examples by FIREborn: Fear.ogg ---- Sad.ogg ---- Tired.ogg ---- Surprise.ogg ---- Joy.ogg ---- Fast like the wind.ogg.
This school is:
Narrative film production - Wikiversity Film School and School of Music - Wikiversity Film School
This course is:
Film scoring
The pages in the course is:
Introduction to film scoring
Create the sound of fear from a single note
Create other moods from a single note
Create the sound of joy using a delicate rhythm
Create other moods from delicate rhythms
Quiz: Music which tells a story
Create a mood with a melody
Create a story with a melody
Quiz: The Spy Story - Who is who?
DVD-Video: Scoring your first scene - The Promotion
Create four motifs - Mama, papa, baby, and Goldie
Create continuity with a single motif
Foreground / Background music - soft vs. loud
Quiz: Watch a short movie - George Lucas In Love
DVD-Video: What is a "Spotting Session"? - Only A Dream
DVD-Video: Write two musical cues for Home Wrecker You are here!
More musical theory
Butchering Midi - The starwars theme
DVD-Video: How would you score Green Tea Smoothie ?
DVD-Video: Write a film score for Blindman's Bluff
Write a film score for Seduced by the Dark Side!

This lesson page has changed

Just two musical cues

All you have to do is two (2) musical cues for this lesson. That is all.
If you want to do more, that is OK, too.
Ordering the disk

Disk required for this lesson

Lesson requirements
This course uses disks from the Star Movie Shop. I can loan the disks to you if you promise to return each disk in one month. (The disks are not copy protected.)
When you are ready, tell me that you want to borrow the disk called "Home Wrecker". clicking here
Earn points for the next lesson.
When you complete a film score for this scene and return the disk to me, you qualify to borrow the next disk.
Getting Started
If you need help setting up your program

There is a page which tells you how to set up GarageBand to do film scoring. If you have not done this before (with any program), go to How to score with GarageBand.

Getting Started Scoring "Home Wrecker"

Disk Contents

You can play this disk in any modern DVD-Video NTSC player or using a DVD-Video player in your computer.
Even though you will be only doing the film scoring, you might want to look at the entire DVD-Video disk.

DVD-Data Section
Also on the disk is a DVD-Data section with data files for film scoring and film editing.

Write a film score

What did she do last night?

The real thing
Finally, you get to score a scene from a real television drama.
This scene is from "Home Wrecker" from the Star Movie Shop who is the sponsor of these lessons. This disk is an editing workshop for young film editors but the disk also contains a finished edit of the scene for you to create a film score.

The story for this series

Her history
The young woman is a super hero. She protects the world from vampires. And most important, she is super strong.
But after 6 seasons of slaying vampires on television, the young woman still cannot get a boyfriend (because of her super strength) and she cannot get a good job (because she is too busy killing evil monsters.)
His history
He is one of the "undead". But he is really, really cute.
The dilemma
What is a girl to do?
Now it is the morning after. Now she realizes what she has done. (And she wrecked the house doing it. That super strength, remember!)

The story of this scene

  1. The young woman and the man are sleeping.
  2. The young woman wakes up and is surprised... and maybe horrified or perhaps secretly happy about last night.
  3. When the young woman realizes that the house has been destroyed and she asks, "When did the house fall down?"
  4. The man replies, "I don't know. It must have been between the first time and..."
  5. The young woman (and the audience) thinks about this for a while. (For the long edit of this scene, she thinks about this for a long, long time.)
  6. Finally the young woman says, "Oh. Oh my Gosh!" (Actually, she does not say "Gosh" so you need to hide that mistake with your music.)
End of scene.
Your film scoring exercise using a real scene

Your assignment

Compose and perform two musical cues (pieces of the film score) for this scene:
Load the edited version of the scene into your music program.
The music can start two seconds before the beginning of the scene. This creates continuity between scenes.

A sample spotting session

Instructions from the director or the producer of the TV series
Here is a typical list you might get for scoring this scene.
Remember, for this assignment, you only have to do two musical cues.

Spotting Session

Timecode 01:00:00:00 to 01:00:21:00
1. Narrative music - the two people are asleep and it is now almost morning.
  • With your music, you must explain that it is morning and these two are sleeping (or that all is peaceful.)

Timecode 01:00:21:00 to 01:00:36:00
2. Narrative music - the woman is surprised and even horrified.
  • With your music, you must create the feeling of fear and surprise.

Timecode 01:00:36:00 to 01:00:39:00
3. Faint background music or absolutely no music - Perhaps add the emotion of astonishment when she asks, "When did the house fall down?"
  • No music.

Timecode 01:00:39:00 to 01:00:46:00
4. Narrative music - the man looks around in wonderment.
  • Your music must express is amazement or maybe his sinister delight at this amazing situation.

Timecode 01:00:46:00 to 01:00:51:00
5. Faint background music or absolutely no music - Perhaps add the emotion of surprise when the man replies, "It must have been between the first time and..."
  • No music.

Timecode 01:00:51:00 to 01:01:06:00
6. Narrative music - Explain to the audience what the man and the young woman did last night to cause the house to fall down.
  • I think it is called "Sex!"
Your music must explain what kind of sex would cause a house to fall down. (If you are under 18 years old, do not do this part of the assignments. You are not supposed to know about things like this.)

Timecode 01:01:06:00 to 01:01:07:00
7. Background music or no music - Perhaps add the emotion of surprise, horror, joy, or disgust when the young woman says, "Oh."
  • Your music (or just one musical note) must explain how she feels.

Timecode 01:01:07:00 to 01:01:15:00
8. Foreground music - Drown her expletive with music when the young woman says, "Oh my Gosh!".
  • Your music must express her anguish and at the same time, hide the fact she used bad words.

Note: The ending music can continue to 01:01:20:00 (which is into the next scene.)
This creates continuity between the scenes.

Hide her words!

Here is the exception to the rule.
The rule
Previously, you learned that you never use foreground music (loud music) when there is dialog.
The exception to the rule can be to hide mistakes
When you do not want the audience to hear the words of the actor, you can cover the words with loud music. The audience will still hear the words but because of the loud music, the audience will not understand the words or pay attention to the words.
Please cover her words
That is needed here. You must add music to prevent the audience from thinking about the words of the young woman. She was supposed to say, "Oh my Gosh!". She said something different.
Getting Started Scoring "Home Wrecker"

Start here - Your first assignements for Home Wrecker

If you wish, you can start with the two longest cues
Please start by creating the cue for Sleeping
When you are finished, send this cue to me.

The second cue you might want to try is "What they did last night?"
If you wish, please create the cue for what they did last night. This is probably the most fun to do. Or you can try another.
When you are finished, send this cue to me.

Examples of musical cues for Home Wrecker for the course on film scoring for musicians

Joe Mac has created two musical cues using a Midi controller and GarageBand 4 - 05 October 2007 - 20 points

Blue Gordon has created the film score using Sibelius 4, using the Garritan Personal Orchestra sound library. - 05 December 2007 - 20 points

Blue Gordon says, "Scoring this scene was challenging and hard. I thought, scoring for film would be easier, but it's hard to find something that fits the film and make the music into something coherent, which in "Home Wrecker", I haven't fully managed to do. To be honest, I don't feel like scoring another scene, after seeing how difficult it was to score "Home Wrecker"...

Ben Henderson (Cubinoid) has created the film score for "Home Wrecker". - 05 December 2007 - 20 points

Cubinoid has also created the two cues for Home Wrecker.
I used Logic Pro and lots of orchestral samples.
The opening cue resembles a pastoral symphony - in contrast to the desolation of the scenery, but it aims to provide a "Dawn" image, yet with underlying unease. The unease turns to tension when the feet come into view - is that a dead body we see?
Alarm bells start ringing and the melodramatic horns signal the start of something happening.
The final cue is a parody of a song voted the second sexiest song of all time - "Closer" by Nine Inch Nails. In the complete version, I added a tambourine because during writing the score, it became an type of leitmotif instrument that represented the baddy/boyfriend - it has references to the tail rattle of a snake, traditionally the symbol for the devil and temptation within Christian culture, and simultaneously it is a reference to early Pagan and Montagnais spiritual music, that was originally played on tambourine, and I used this as a reference to the animism and spiritualism of those cultures. I like the fact that this dualism represents a character that is inherently bad and yet a boyfriend as well.

      • Instructor's note: The first cue is extremely good. It works well with the scene.

Two more exercises in film scoring using real scenes

The next exercise

Next, you will create scores for two more scenes. Click here for your last lesson.

Contact your instructor

Your instructor for this course is Robert Elliott. You can send me a quick email by clicking here.

NOTE: To submit assignments
To submit assignments, attach your completed assignments to an email and send it to me at "r_elliott".