2001: A Space Odyssey – the Hidden Music

16 March 2007

Still from "2001: A Space Odyssey" Professor Stephen Deutsch will examine the hidden music of the film 2001: A Space Odyssey during the next BU Lecture on Thursday, 29 March, 5.30pm.

Since its original premier in 1968, Stanley Kubrick’s epic and iconic science fiction film “2001: A Space Odyssey” has continued to fascinate audiences and critics through its ambivalent message and unexpected use of music.

2001 certainly broke ground for its scientific realism and breathtaking visuals. It became an instant reference for future Sci-Fi movies, due to its emphasis on human evolution and technology, artificial intelligence and extraterrestrial life.

The film’s music has also caused much discussion – and controversy – particularly the fact that the original score which Kubrick commissioned from veteran Alex North was never used. Instead, Kubrick became one of the first major film directors to use pre-recorded classical tracks.

It is this aspect of music in film on which Bournemouth University Professor Stephen Deutsch will focus when he delivers the next BU Lecture entitled "2001: A Space Odyssey – The Hidden Music," on Thursday, 29 March (5.30pm) on the University’s Talbot Campus.

An experienced composer and sound designer, Professor Deutsch will look at North’s original score for 2001. He will also discuss ways in which music can give the audience hidden references to the meaning of a film.

In fact, according to Professor Deutsch, Kubrick used ‘musical codes’ hidden in the soundtrack to 2001.

“Kubrick often used music to give hidden references to the meaning of his films,” said Professor Deutsch. “There are certainly hidden references in Kubrick’s later film, The Shining, and in Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas.”

“In 2001, Kubrick used an intricate pattern of musical codes and, as a result, the officially commissioned score by Alex North was not used, although it was recorded,” Professor Deutsch continued. “In fact, North did not realise the omission until he attended the premiere!”

Professor Deutsch is an academic and professional composer in Bournemouth’s renowned Media School. His music has been performed by eminent artists including the Medici Quartet, David Campbell and The Gaudier Ensemble.

He has also composed over 30 scores for film, theatre, radio and television and he has collaborated with playwright Peter Barnes on a number of projects, including Jubilee (2001), the Olivier Award-winning play Red Noses (1985) and the feature film Hard Times (1994).

He has significant expertise in the fields of electronic music (including sampling and synthesis), 20th Century music techniques, the composer in the marketplace, and issues relating to film, television, broadcasting and related subjects.

Event Details

When: 5.30 pm, Thursday 29 March
Talbot Campus of Bournemouth University
Price: Free
Further Information: Please telephone (01202) 961032 / 961033 or email bulectures@bournemouth.ac.uk

The lecture is preceded at 4.45 pm with light refreshments. Both the lecture and refreshments are free of charge. All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

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