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Star Wars Music Minute

Dec 26, 2022

Film music PhD researcher Conor Power joins me for a discussion about The Empire Strikes Back minutes 31-35. We're finishing up the Battle of Hoth along with some shrill piccolos, rollicking pianos, an "extra minor" Luke theme, and a brass line that we both fancy for reasons we try to figure out. As the episode title...


Dec 19, 2022

We're getting deep into the Battle of Hoth today! This is minutes 26-30 of The Empire Strikes Back with composer/orchestrator Dominic Sewell. The quickie topic is a primer on the anatomy and function of a score. 

To follow along with the visuals in this episode, I recommend checking out the video version (or just spot...


Dec 12, 2022

In minutes 21-25 of The Empire Strikes Back, Vader sets course for the Hoth system while the Rebels prepare to defend their base. Joining me today is Stephanie Manning, a bassoonist, writer, and 2022 Fellow of the Rubin Institute for Music Criticism. We talk about the Imperial March, the contrast between Rebel and...


Dec 5, 2022

Music theorist Dr. Jenn Harding joins Xanthe for an analysis of minutes 16-20 of The Empire Strikes Back. We talk about textural shifts, snowspeeder sound design, macroharmony, musical structure, spectrograms, math, intonation, the Leia-Han-Luke love triangle (and what the music has to say about it), and more! 

This...


Nov 28, 2022

This episode is about minutes 11-15 of The Empire Strikes Back with my guest Jake Jahiel -- a musicologist, Baroque music specialist, and 2022 Fellow of the Rubin Institute for Music Criticism. Today, we're talking about the Spectralist-adjacent music of Hoth, the Force theme that sprang from the petri dish, Wagner's...