[JPL] About the jazz in Citizen Kane, who knows the players?

Jim Wilke jwilke123 at comcast.net
Mon Dec 3 17:57:37 EST 2007


Arturo,

Bernard Hermann was responsible for the music in Citizen Kane.  I found 
the following info relating to his work with Orson Welles at 
www.allmovie.com  - but no mention of jazz influences or the musicians 
in the film:

------------

A composition prize winner at age 13, Manhattan-born composer Bernard 
Herrmann studied at New York University and Julliard before accepting 
his first conductor's post at age 20. While he wrote for virtually 
every branch of the musical theater -- ballet, concert hall, opera -- 
Herrmann's latter-day fame rests squarely on his prolific film work. As 
one of several composer/conductors retained by the CBS radio network in 
the mid-1930s (he was briefly married to radio writer Lucille Fletcher, 
of Sorry Wrong Number fame), Herrmann worked on Orson Welles' Mercury 
Theatre of the Air. When Welles headed to Hollywood to direct Citizen 
Kane (1941), he invited Herrmann to write the film's score, promising 
the young composer full artistic freedom. Welles so respected 
Herrmann's talent that many scenes in Kane were tailored to fit the 
music, rather than the other way around. Herrmann capped his first year 
in Hollywood with an Academy Award -- not for Kane, but for another RKO 
production, All That Money Can Buy (1941). He was engaged to score 
Welles' second picture, The Magnificent Ambersons (1942), but angrily 
demanded that his name be removed from the credits after his music was 
extensively rearranged by RKO contractee Roy Webb.

---------

BTW, allmovie.com is a great cross-referenced guide to everything about 
movies. It's as good for movies as allmusic.com is for music.

Jim Wilke
Jazz After Hours, PRI
www.jazzafterhours.org


On Monday, December 3, 2007, at 02:40  PM, Arturo wrote:

> I know, I need to be chastised but believe it or not I have never seen 
> one
> of the acknowledged masterpieces of cinema, Orson Welles' Citizen 
> Kane, one
> of the few top 50 movies on everyone's list that I have not seen. Late
> Saturday night unwinding after a hectic day I was channel surfing when 
> some
> stimulating music
> made me stop, it was a scene towards the end of Citizen Kane in an 
> "open
> garden" party at night affair with some jazz musicians or actors 
> portraying
> jazzers playing some jazz that for the movie's era seemed very ahead 
> of its
> time, I couldn't think of anyone playing in that style at the time, 
> almost
> free form. After the scene ended I switched channels as not to spoil 
> the
> ending, I have already added the film to my queue at Netflix to watch 
> in its
> entirety. A google search provided no clue as to the music or 
> musicians from
> the O S T or other sources.
>
> Anyone here know about the music and the musicians? Was Orson Welles a 
> jazz
> fan? It appears he was for including some jazz in the movie.
>
> Arturo
>
>



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