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Peter and Wendy (Maurizio Malagnini)

December 24, 2015

Cover_PeterAndWendyPETER AND WENDY

Maurizio Malagnini, 2015, Silva Screen Records
28 tracks, 65:59

Merry Christmas everyone! On the eleventh hour, and out of the blue, arrives one of the year’s most exciting albums. Maurizio’s Malagnini’s “Peter and Wendy” may well be the “Pan”-score we all wanted to hear this year.

Review by Pete Simons

What is it?

Commissioned by ITV, “Peter and Wendy” is a 2-hour re-telling of the classic story (“Peter Pan”) by J.M. Barrie. The great Stanley Tucci stars as Hook, singer Paloma Faith appears as Tinkerbell, and Laura Fraser is Mrs Darling. Youngsters Zac Sutcliffe and Hazel Doupe play Peter and Wendy. Diarmuid Lawrence directs, whilst Maurizio Malagnini (“The Paradise” seasons one and two) provides the magical score.

What does it sound like?

The album opens with the “Main Title”, a rousing theme led by brass, with plenty of flourishes for strings and woodwinds. It reminds me a little of James Newton Howard’s style, to be honest; and continues into “Great Ormond Street Hospital” with its playful strings, winds and softly ooh-ing choir. It’s tracks like this that also venture, ever so slightly, into “The Paradise” territory. Soft bells add a genuine sense of magic to “The Hospital Museum” and “Receiving the Book”.

“Looking for the Shadow” is a light-hearted, adventurous key for full orchestra, though darting flutes play a pivotal part. This playfulness continues into “The Flight to Neverland”, a colourful and rousing cue as infectious and memorable as anything from Williams’ “Hook” or Newton-Howard’s “Peter Pan”.

Soft strings and winds underscore the drama in “Lucy’s Dream”, whilst “Captain Hook” offers dramatic brass writing, swirling strings and winds and even a little bit of chanting choir. Hook’s theme returns several times of course, for example in “Keep Your Eyes Open”. There is some ‘snooping around’ music in “The Lost Boys”, whilst “Lucy is Alive” is a gorgeous, melancholy cue for piano, strings and flute. Things get even more beautiful in the lyrical “A Beautiful Place to Live”, which offers a heart-warming melody for strings and soft choir. There are beautiful tracks aplenty here. Those familiar with Malagnini’s “The Paradise” already know just how charming his music is; but where “The Paradise” may be a little too sweet for some, “Peter and Wendy” strikes a wonderful balance between drama and adventure.

There is beautiful drama in “Tinkerbell Drinks the Poison” and “I Believe in Faeries”. The main theme receives a glorious reprise in “The Final Fight”; and the big brassy chords keep on coming in “The Death of Captain Hook”, which ends on a melancholy note. Whilst “Peter’s Farewell” and most of “Leaving the Hospital” are melancholy cues, the latter does end with a welcome reprise of the main theme. The album concludes with the lyrical song “Peter and Wendy”, which somehow reminds me of Tuomas Kantelinen’s work.

Is it any good?

Maurizio Malagnini’s “Peter and Wendy” is an absolute delight! It may well be the “Pan”-score we all wanted to hear this year (you know… the one Dario Marianelli wrote). It’s a lively score, full of wonder and fantasy. At times you might suspect a hint a temp track love (there are a few times I’m reminded of James Newton Howard, Tuomas Kantelinen and at a stretch Hans Zimmer’s famous pirate score), but it’s easily forgiven as the score is just so infectious, so colourful, playful and utterly charming. Silva Screen is releasing “Peter and Wendy” on Christmas day and I couldn’t think of a better present!

Rating [4/5]

Tracklisting

01. Peter and Wendy Main Titles (0.47)
02. Great Ormond Street Hospital (1.13)
03. The Hospital Museum (1.31)
04. Receiving the Book (0.49)
05. Looking for the Shadow (2.11)
06. The Flight to Neverland (2.31)
07. Lucy’s Dream (3.56)
08. Captain Hook (3.17)
09. The Bear and the Crocodile (0.51)
10. Keep Your Eyes Open (1.43)
11. The Lost Boys (1.47)
12. Lucy Is Alive (2.11)
13. A Beautiful Place to Live (1.25)
14. Bedtime for the Children (1.59)
15. The Execution (2.22)
16. The Mermaids (1.00)
17. The First Fight (4.04)
18. The Kite (3.14)
19. What If Something Goes Wrong (2.48)
20. Hook Poisons the Medicine (2.28)
21. Tinkerbell Drinks the Poison (2.48)
22. I Believe in Fairies (2.55)
23. Back to the Ship (3.58)
24. The Final Fight (3.26)
25. The Death of Captain Hook (1.47)
26. Peter’s Farewell (2.11)
27. Leaving the Hospital (2.40)
28. Peter and Wendy (4.07)

Availability

For more information visit Silva Screen‘s website

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