The theme from ‘The Simpsons’, but it’s an epic piano fantasy
5 September 2018, 18:50
Danny Elfman’s ridiculously catchy theme to The Simpsons… but it’s an epic piano fantasy played on a Steinway grand.
The arrangement, which begins with an octave tremolo in the bass, manages to encapsulate pretty much every aspect of the original orchestral score (which includes an alto saxophone, a tuba and a snare drum, no less).
It’s no secret that people have been obsessed with The Simpsons theme for years – and it’s all down to some clever music theory.
Danny Elfman created that quirky, disjointed sound by writing the main tune in Lydian mode. Here’s what it looks like:
Just by sharpening one note (the F) and flattening another (the B), Elfman gives a completely different flavour to what would have been a simple C major scale.
We’ll be humming this all day now...
Jon Kimura Parker’s performance was part of a Lunch and Learn event for the Honens International Piano Competition. The finals will take place at the Jack Singer concert hall in Calgary on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 September 2018.