Friday, December 31, 2010

5 on Friday - 47

Travis at Trav's Thoughts invites everyone to lay down a short set of music that takes their fancies for his 5 on Friday meme.

Just in time for New Year's Eve! Here are some selections from a gorgeous set of films watched every single year by millions of Russians, in the same way that North Americans watch It's a Wonderful Life.

I cannot tell you how much I love these films and the music from them.

1 - Original film score for Ironiya sudby (The Irony of Fate) - Composed by Mikael Tariverdiev

This is a medley of the major musical themes that appear in the film. They're repeated in the sequel, made thirty-two years later. This clip contains scenes from both films. The two principal actors from the first film are the older couple in the sequel footage.

I just adore the melancholy magic of this musical score. It gets in my head and in my heart and just nestles in.

2 - Yesli u vas netu tyoti ( If You Have No Auntie) - Konstantin Khabensky

The film is peppered with what is known as ambient music, or music which appears in the scene itself (not as overdubbed soundtrack that only the audience can hear.) The characters are musical and the action stops - as in a musical - for a song. But it's entirely as a cultural reality, and not as the suspension of disbelief that a true musical employs, when the character's inner monologue becomes song and dancing breaks out.

The composer used the poetry of major Russian literary figures for his lyrics, and set music to them, drawing on a form known as the author song movement, or bard songs - these arose in the 1960s as something similar to the western beatnik movement.

Here the actor who plays the son of the major romantic lead from the original film sings the song his character's father once sang.

If you don't have a house
It won't catch fire
And your wife won't leave you

If you haven't
If you haven't
If you haven't got a wife
Got a wife

If you don't have a dog
A neighbour won't poison it
You won't fight with a friend

The orchestra is playing loudly
trumpets blow...
You must think for yourself
To have or have not

If you don't have an auntie
You can't lose her
And if you don't live
You can't die

The orchestra is playing loudly
Trumpets blow...
You must think for yourself
To have or not to have

- Aronov / Tariverdiev

3 - I Bless You - Alla Pugacheva

Both main actors had their singing voices dubbed over by professional singers in the original Irony of Fate. Here Nadya, played by Barbara Brylska, sings with the voice of the woman who became a major singing star in Russia - Alla Pugacheva.

I want to ask the mirror
With the cloudy, misty dreams

I want to make it tell me
Where you are heading
And where will you find shelter

I see
The mast of a tall ship
And you standing on the deck
And in the stern of the train
I see fields

Wrapped in the dusky sadness
The evening fields in dew
Ravens circling over them

I bless you
I bless you
I bless you
To go wherever you want

- Tariverdiev / Tsvetaeva

4 - Ya sprosil u yasenya (I Asked the Ash Tree) - Sergey Nikitin

Although this scene follows Nadya through a difficult decision, the song is performed by Zhenya, played by Andrey Myagkov and sung by Sergey Nikitin. This is one of the only times in the film where the song functions as in a normal musical, revealing character development without being an ambient performance.

I asked the ash-tree:
Where is my loved one?
The ash-tree didn't answer me
It just shook its head

I asked the poplar:
Where is my loved one?
The poplar threw its autumn leaves
All over me

I asked autumn:
Where is my loved one?
Autumn answered
With a pouring rain

I asked the rain:
Where is my loved one?
The rain shed its tears
Outside my window

- Kirshon / Tariverdiev

5 - Opyat Metel (Snowstorm Again) - Alla Pugacheva and Kristina Orbakayte

For the sequel, released for the thirty-year anniversary of the original film, the main singing star from Ironiya sudby is joined by her real-life daughter, to sing about the complicated love lives of the mother and daughter characters in the second film.

Not closing the door behind you
I live for another year

And since then
My unintentional losses
I'm waiting for someone

Again a snowstorm
And the past suffers in darkness

Again a snowstorm
Two eternities united
In one short day

Forgive me
Without understanding me
Don't languish on the threshhold
For long

Because of our
Second chance at love
Our past will become
Ancient history

- Lyrics by unknown artist


Akelamalu said...

Wishing you a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous 2011 Julia. Here's to another year of friendship. x

Travis Cody said...

Fascinating selections. Have a safe and sane new year celebration!

PS - My word verification was "unkury". That could so be a Russian word!

Alice Audrey said...

The soundtrack reminds me of jazzy 50's movies.

Linda said...

What Travis said - very fascinating selections to end the year with!

I hope that 2011 is a happy and healthy one for you!