Limited edition of 3000 copies.
Elmer Bernstein's score for 1962's Birdman of Alcatraz may well be the composer's most important score never to have found its way to a commercial release. After nearly 45 years, however, the film music headlines finally can turn to this masterful score and, all hyperbole aside, trumpet a truly historic discovery.
Birdman of Alcatraz was released by United Artists in 1962. The film was directed by John Frankenheimer and starred Burt Lancaster as convicted murderer Robert Stroud. For the film, Lancaster gave one of the most memorable performances of his career.
Birdman of Alcatraz comes from a time that could be quite accurately described as the most important two or three-year period of Elmer Bernstein's entire 50-plus year career. Birdman, along with The Magnificent Seven, Summer and Smoke, Walk on the Wild Side, To Kill A Mockingbird and The Great Escape, all fall between 1960 and 1963. An astounding run of inspiration and success!
For Birdman of Alcatraz, Bernstein composed a magical score, so subtle, and so delicate that he brought compassion to the character of a convicted murderer and, in one of the best-scored scenes of his entire career, brought a baby bird into the world. Hearing the hour of music that Bernstein composed for this film, assembled together for the very first time, is sure to bring a new appreciation for this important opus.
This CD contains many cues in their complete form that were only heard in abbreviated versions in the film. We've also got 11 cues that were not heard in the final cut at all! We couldn't be more excited about this release and are so pleased to be able to finally offer this landmark score.
The CD cover features artwork by the great and legendary Bob Peak.
- Varèse Sarabande