Middle Earth has been good to Canadian-born composer Howard Shore, who sees his Oscar-winning score for the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy as his crowning achievement.
"The piece is very close to me, I spent close to four years writing it," says Shore.
His Rings symphony has gone on to a life on the concert stage, the latest stage being next week's performance by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
The performance, conducted by Markus Huber, and featuring soprano Kaitlyn Lusk, will also include the Vancouver Bach Choir, the Vancouver Bach Children's Chorus, and images by Tolkien artists projected on video screens in the hall.
The two-hour, 10-minute symphony takes the listener through the entire Lord of the Rings story, although Shore wrote a total of nearly 11 hours of music for the three movies based on J.R.R. Tolkien's fantasy novels.
"Really, everything I knew about composing, orchestrating, conducting -- everything I had learned about music was in it," says Shore over the phone from his New York office.
"I had probably done about 70 films before I recorded and wrote the music for Lord of the Rings. It was such a wonderful book to write to, one of the most complex fantasy worlds ever created." [READ MORE]