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The Life of Vergie Winters (1934)

Home > Film: The Life of Vergie Winters > Theme: Lullaby + Funeral March > Instance: 0:02:32

Theme names: Lullaby + Funeral March
Composer: Felix Mendelssohn; arranged by Max Steiner
Start time: 0:02:32
End time: 0:03:31
Total duration: 0:00:59
Page #: 7
Measure #: 55
Scene: Main title
Key: e
Meter: 4/4
Tempo (bpm): 72
Marking: Con forza
Instrumentation: brass band, orchestra

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Description: As the camera moves to a close-up of Vergie in her jail cell, Steiner adds strings playing the Lullaby theme as a countermelody
On-screen: Vergie in her jail cell
Music annotations: [m. 55] con forza; [m. 57] sf; [m. 58] dim; [m. 61] sempre dim; [m. 64] p; [m. 65] dim; [m. 66] pp / p; [m. 67] dim; [m. 68] pp; [m. 69] poco rall / dim; [m. 70] tutti / f / a tempo / p
Orchestration annotations: [m. 56] o / bb [repeated every line through m. 66, inclusive]; [m. 67] chimes / celli; [m. 69] orch / band
Analysis: The combination of the funeral march and the Lullaby theme here is done quite expertly, with the pitches in the Lullaby being supported by all of Mendelssohn's harmonies and the repeated gesture in the final phrase of Mendelssohn's tune supporting the descending sequence in the Lullaby theme's second phrase; because of the slow pace of the Lullaby theme it is not clear if listeners would have recognized that the themes were being combined, especially since the Lullaby theme has only been heard once so far in the film

classical music | combination of themes | funeral | funeral march | leading lady | plagal cadence | pondering | prison | prisoner | sequence | somber | source music | suspect | watching