Legendary film composer John Williams and superstar violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter have announced a new album, Across The Stars. Released on 30 August, the album will feature Williams conducting new arrangements of some of his iconic movie themes, including pieces written for the Star Wars and Harry Potter movies. Across The Stars was recorded at the historic Sony Pictures Scoring Stage in Hollywood, where many great film soundtracks of the past were recorded, including The Wizard Of Oz, Gone With The Wind, Singin’ In The Rain, Lawrence Of Arabia, and ET.
“There is only one John Williams,” said Anne-Sophie Mutter. “What he writes is just extraordinary. Every time I go to one of his films and there is a violin or cello, I think, I would like to play that! And now I have his wonderful translations of all these iconic themes.” She added it was a “a tremendous honour” to work so closely with John Williams – and that the recording conditions for this album were the finest since she collaborated with Herbert von Karajan.
“Working with Anne-Sophie on this recording has been a pure inspiration,” added Williams. “She has brought vibrant life to these familiar themes in new and unexpected ways, which has been a great joy for me as a composer.”
John Williams explained that for this project he revisited themes from many of his existing scores and completely transformed them. “Presented on the violin, they become a different emotional experience,” he said. One example is his newly arranged version of ‘Hedwig’s Theme’ from the Harry Potter films, which he and Mutter describe as “Harry Potter meets Paginini”, and “a Carmen Fantasy for the 21st century”. The music ranges from Star Wars motifs such as ‘Yoda’s Theme’, from The Empire Strikes Back, to more recent pieces such as ‘Sayuri’s Theme’ from Memoirs Of A Geisha.
John Williams – who has won five Oscars, four Golden Globes, five Emmys and 24 Grammys – is the most successful film composer of all time. He has composed some of the most popular, recognisable and critically-acclaimed film scores in cinematic history. Anne-Sophie Mutter is universally considered to be one of the greatest violinists of modern times. They both consider Across The Stars to be a milestone recording.
“These are melodies which touch us so deeply, they just stay with you,” said Mutter. “That’s the wonderful thing about John’s music – even without the film it has a life of its own.”
Across The Stars by John Williams and Anne-Sophie Mutter will be released on 30 August. Scroll down to read the full tracklisting, and pre-order the album here.
The full tracklisting for Across The Stars by John Williams and Anne-Sophie Mutter is:
1. ‘Rey’s Theme’ – from Star Wars: The Force Awakens
2. ‘Yoda’s Theme’ – from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
3. ‘Hedwig’s Theme’ – from Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone
4. ‘Across The Stars’ (‘Love Theme’) – from Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones
5. ‘Donnybrook Fair’ – from Far And Away
6. ‘Sayuri’s Theme’ – from Memoirs Of A Geisha
7. ‘Night Journeys’ – from Dracula
8. ‘Theme’ – from Sabrina
9. ‘The Duel’ – from The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn
10. ‘Luke And Leia’ – from Star Wars: Return Of The Jedi
11. ‘Nice To Be Around’ – from Cinderella Liberty
12. ‘Theme’ – from Schindler’s List