Jaws: when sharks (and two notes in particular) were terrifying in music

10 August 2014, 11:55 | Updated: 15 July 2015, 15:03

As we enter Shark Week, let's take a moment to celebrate the genius of John Williams's classic score to the film Jaws. We're going to need a bigger bassoon.

John Williams. That is all.

One of the most distinctive motifs in all music. Wagner would be proud. 

And everyone can play it

Even this little guy can wrap his fins around it.

via http://shaaark.com/

Once more, with opposable thumbs this time

This helpful video shows you just how, so you can freak out your neighbours as they lounge in their paddling pool. 

And you'd better watch out

Because as we all know, whenever you hear that motif, you need to swim. Swim very fast (but don't splash; splashing's bad). 

With so much horror, why weren't we warned?

Was Dvorak trying to tell us something in 1893? Does that opening motif sound familiar?

It's getting quite scary

It's all OK - this little one's here to protect you. Just look at the left hook. Cat 1, shark 0.


But they are misunderstood

Of course, away from the drama of the cinema screen, sharks are not psychopathic creatures. They're peaceful, varied, graceful and often endangered. Meet this guy. Some might still see the face of death, but look at him - he's just a friendly, smiling shark. 


But John Williams's score is still epic

Let's hear from the composer and maestro himself, and the Boston Pops in white suits. White suits SOON TO BE COVERED IN BLOOD (not really, but it sure sounds like it).