Star Trek fans and La-La Land Records were completely in tune yesterday at the beautiful, restored Egyptian Theatre on Hollywood Blvd. in Hollywood as fans from across the galaxy gathered to celebrate La-La Land Records’ 10th anniversary and the release of Star Trek: The Original Series Soundtrack Collection, a 15-disc TOS box set that features every last note of TOS music. The set boasts 17 hours of music and is on sale… today. StarTrek.com was on hand for the big event last night, which included screenings of the HD versions of “Amok Time” and “Mirror, Mirror,” free tickets, popcorn and drinks and Tribbles (you read that right), and a post-show discussion with Gerald Fried, the only living TOS composer, and David Gerrold, who penned “The Trouble with Tribbles.”
Other familiar Trek names in the house included Mike and Denise Okuda and Dave Rossi, as well as Roger Lay Jr. and Robert Meyer Burnett, who are producing and editing the TNG Blu-ray special features. Jeff Bond, author of The Music of Star Trek, was there, too, and participated in the post-screening Q&A session with Fried and Gerrold. Fried, though, was the evening’s very special guest, and, pre-screening, the 84-year-old performed a variety of his Star Trek music cues on his oboe, accompanied by a piano. Among Fried’s many other credits are The Killing, Paths of Glory, Gilligan’s Island, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Mission: Impossible and Roots; he’s won an Emmy and is an Oscar nominee, too.
Before the screening, StarTrek.com chatted with fans and checked out the Trek memorabilia on display in the lobby. One fan revealed that he took his very first trip to L.A. all the way from Georgia just for the event. On display in the lobby were a host of TOS props and costumes, including Kirk and Spock’s “Mirror, Mirror” costumes, as well and the Mirror dagger and agonizer. Also worth an extended look: the ahn woon and ceremonial sashes worn by William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy in their “Amok Time” fight sequence.
The episode screenings went over well, and then began the Q&A session, during which Fried, Gerrold and Bond discussed the power and importance of music to TOS. Fried, for example, explained that he used bass guitar as a Spock theme, trying desperately to express motion on behalf of the character. Kirk’s themes, more often than not, were very similar from scene to scene, episode to episode, perhaps, Fried noted, because the captain evoked the same emotion and feeling time and time again. A fan asked Fried if he ever had to alter anything once it had been recorded, and the answer was yes. Fried recalled that occasionally Bob Justman would come in and explain that a story’s elements had changed, meaning the music needed to be revised, and Fried “of course” would accommodate by making tweaks or cutting cues. As a result, he added, there are many cues – including ones from “Amok Time” and “Catspaw” -- that have not been heard in 40-plus years because they were excised.
Another fan asked if he’d be interested in doing some music for Star Trek Into Darkness. Fried called it a “lovely idea.” Fried, who composed the music for five TOS episodes, smiled when asked if coming up with the music was “freeing,” given that he basically got one spotting session in which to see an episode and then score it. “No,” he declared. “It was… scary.” And, at the end of the day, if his scores endure, it’s thanks to a combination of “good music and good writers.”
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