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Ballet Boys
  • Composed by Henrik Skram
  • MovieScore Media / 2014 / 25m

A documentary directed by Kenneth Elvebakk, Ballet Boys follows three graduates of the Norwegian Ballet Academy as they decide whether to pursue their dreams of professional ballet or not.  The wonderful score is by Henrik Skram, only the sixth he has written – and the third to have been released by MovieScore Media.  It’s a short one (only 25 minutes) but leaves quite an impression in that time, fulfilling a dual role of making compelling accompaniment to the various scenes of ballet practice and performance and serving as a somewhat dramatic undercurrent to the documentary.  It achieves both of those things with some aplomb.  The score opens with the exceptional “Grasse”, a classical-styled piece full of pomp and sweep.  The beautiful strings have such urgency and such a compelling narrative drive, the brassy finale absolutely superb.  “Opening” is softer and more contemplative, with a wistful air running through it; but by no means any less beautiful.  “Big Feelings” lives up to its name, the main theme here at one point sounding like it could form the backbone of an heroic comic book movie score.

In “Plan B”, for the first time the boldness is replaced by a feeling of uncertainty, a tentative piano solo with subtle electronic accompaniment bringing a dramatic change of mood.  A magical, somewhat Danny Elfman-like air surrounds “Future”, another great piece.  A delicate, moving piano fantasy is the highlight of “Play”, one of the loveliest pieces of all.  The final five cues are then all very brief little vignettes.  “Audition” sees a return of the grandeur of earlier pieces, before the tension of “The Wait”.  The Elfmanesque choir is the highlight of “Approved”; “Childhood” is darker, so too “Finale”, the latter quite powerfully so.  Ballet Boys is an exquisite score, a real gem that is very much recommended.

Rating: **** 1/2 | |

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  1. mastadge (Reply) on Monday 25 August, 2014 at 19:54

    Thanks for the heads-up! (I never know how to punctuate “heads-up” so it doesn’t look wrong. Hyphen? Apostrophe?) Will definitely keep an ear out for this one.

  2. dominique (Reply) on Wednesday 27 August, 2014 at 17:28

    you´re right and thanks for that, james, it´s really an exquisite score!
    greets, dominique.