John Williams: Flying to Neverland
John Williams was brought on board for Stephen Spielberg’s 1991 film, Hook, as it was originally intended to be a musical. After this idea was scrapped, Williams began working on the orchestral soundtrack. During the recording of the soundtrack, Williams conducted the orchestra. The extended version of the soundtrack was subsequently released later in 1991.
As the title suggests, Flying to Neverland is used in the first flying sequence of Hook. As with many of Williams’ scores, this piece is evocative and completely encapsulates the themes surrounding flying and air. The fanfare opening is heroic and sets the scene for when the characters take flight. The intensity is high as the whirling strings build tension as the bold brass continue with their powerful fanfare themes.
Similar to Flying from E.T., Flying to Neverland poses similar techniques from Williams that musically describes flying. From the harp glissandi to the unison-played themes, the music is constantly moving forward with all the charm and wonder of Williams’ pen. The trumpet theme near the end of the piece brings together some past themes, which is then passed on to the trombones and horns. As the sequence comes to an end, the music builds tension to reach the final epic climax which concludes this thrilling musical journey.
Ⓒ Alex Burns
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