Stage Left

September 17, 2000

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Spaced Out

Amy solos again, this time with a show of music from science fiction TV and films.
PLAYLIST
Selection Source Performer(s) Comments
Flying Theme John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 (1999) London Symphony Orchestra, and the London Voices; conducted by the composer, John Williams Kicking off a longer-than-usual Stage Left (filling in for the unexpectedly absent Jan Hamilton Douglas, host of Ragtime St. Louis). From E.T., the charming 1982 Steven Spielberg film about a little boy and his new friend, whose fingertip glows.
Duel of the Fates John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 (1999) Performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, and the London Voices; conducted by the composer, John Williams From Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace. Choral music (sung in Aramaic, I think) from the big fight scene in the movie. Gives the expression "double-edged sword" a new meaning. [See below for more]
The Jetsons Television's Greatest Hits (1986) Barbera-Hanna Music Hanna-Barbera's suburban family of the future. The first introduction most of us had to science fiction/ space fantasy. . . The animation series ran from 1962-64 on CBS, then intermittently on other stations for the next fifteen years or so. Probably only original episodes aried during the first two years. Amy sez: "Did you know there was a Jetsons movie? Yep, it came out in 1980. I didn't see it either."
Lost in Space Television's Greatest Hits (1986) John Williams, composer From the original 1965-68 TV series about the Space Family Robinson looking for Alpha Centauri.
Main Title 2nd season The Best of Babylon 5 (1997) Christopher Franke, composer In the year 2258, it is ten years after the Earth-Minbari War. Commander Sinclair takes command of a giant five-mile-long cylindrical space station, orbiting a planet in neutral space. At a crossroads of interstellar commerce and diplomacy, Cmdr Sinclair (2d season Captain Sheridan) must try to establish peace and prosperity between various interstellar empires, all the while fighting forces from within the Earth Alliance. It is a precarious command, particularly given that sabotage led to the destruction of Babylon stations 1, 2, and 3 and 4 vanished without trace.

Produced from 1994 to 1998, this syndicated series has a loyal fan following (which includes our own Chuck Lavazzi) and a video game or two to its credit.
Star Trek Back to the Future: 18 Science Fiction Film Themes (1986) London Starlight Orchestra Composed by Alexander Courage; the TV show premiered in 1966 and only lasted three seasons, but it spawned a franchise and several short-lived copycat "space westerns".
The Thing Strikes/ Desert Rendezvous Space3: Beyond the Final Frontier (2000) A mix of staff composers, including Henry Mancini, if you can believe that From It Came From Outer Space (1953), based on a story by Ray Bradbury (originally filmed in 3-D !), directed by Jack Arnold & starring actors no one's ever heard of. One of the first sci-fi movies to use the "borrowing" human bodies premise (see Invasion of the Body Snatchers, etc.)
The Space Fleet Space3: Beyond the Final Frontier (2000) Peter Schickele (aka PDQ Bach) From Silent Running (1971), directed by Douglas Trumbull and starring Bruce Dern. Michael Cimino and Steve Bochco wrote the script about a space station botanist's fight to save Earth's final vegetation samples from destruction.
Blade Runner Greatest Science Fiction Hits III (1986) Vangelis, composer; Hall Daniels & Neil Norman, arrangers A disturbing, classic science fiction movie, based on a Phillip K. Dick novel titled Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Starring Harrison Ford, who also played Hans Solo in the first three Star Wars movies, the 1982 movie was directed by Ridley Scott; it also featured Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos, M. Emmet Walsh, and Daryl Hannah.
The Imperial March John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 (1999) Performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by the composer, John Williams From The Empire Strikes Back (1980). Second of three films (which we later found out were actually numbers 4, 5 & 6 in the sequence).
Suite from Close Encounters of the Third Kind John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 (1999) London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by the composer, John Williams Steven Spielberg’s 1977 movie about the search for contact with aliens. If you listen closely, you can hear a snatch of the wistful Disney song "When You Wish Upon a Star".
Main Title John Williams: Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 (1999) Performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by the composer, John Williams From Star Wars. "A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away . . ." 1977 movie which launched George Lucas's epic saga {also referred to as a "space western") of the adventures of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Obi Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, Chewbacca the Wookie, R2D2, C3PO, et al.
Star Fleet Academy Space3: Beyond the Final Frontier (2000) Ron Jones; includes the Alexander Courage Star Trek theme From the 1977 computer game "in which you play a young cadet training at the Academy to become a Starfleet officer" [liner notes]. Jones also scored many episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Courage The Best of Star Trek, Vol. 2 (2000) Dennis McCarthy, composer From All Good Things, the final eipsode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Captain Picard is shifted through time by the all-powerful Q to defend humanity's right to exist in the cosmos. ST:TNG ran from 1987-94.
Epilogue. Star Tracks II (1987) Erich Kunzel and the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra; James Horner, composer; Leonard Nimoy, voice From Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), second in the series of Star Trek movies, directed by Nicholas Meyer. The plot resurrects an Übermensch from the original series (played by Ricardo Montalban) to wreak vengeance on the original cast. Arguably the best of the Star Trek movies.


Acronyms and other mysteries defined:

OC: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Cast recording of a Broadway show, along with the date.

OS: Unless otherwise indicated, the Original Soundtrack recording of a film, TV show, etc.


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