Sunday, April 9, 2023

Paramount Pictures' Stage M (and Elmer Bernstein)

In a piece I posted last month, I mentioned a 'famous' film studio's music recording stage: Paramount Pictures' Stage M.  Many scores were recorded there, including those for: Sunset Boulevard; Psycho; Breakfast at Tiffany'sOut of Africa; The Hunt for Red OctoberGoodwill Hunting; Road to PerditionThe Bourne Identity; The IslandWALL-E; and many others. Music for Paramount television shows was recorded there, too, including episode background cues for programs such as Mission: Impossible and Star Trek.

Recordings were not limited to instrumental parts. "White Christmas", "Mona Lisa", "Que Sera, Sera", and "Moon River" are some famous motion picture songs laid down at Stage M, by artists such as Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, and Doris Day.

That storied recording studio is now gone, having been closed in 2006, but through all the men and women who followed the batons of music men such as Victor Young, Bernard Herrmann, Henry Mancini, John Barry, and Jerry Goldsmith, its acoustical memories live on.

The late great film composer Elmer Bernstein recorded his classic score for The Ten Commandments at "M". (He replaced Victor Young when the veteran composer fell ill.) The film itself doesn't deserve, but needs, this brilliant work.

Happy Easter!

Elmer Bernstein conducts a cue for The Ten Commandments (1956).

* Photos reproduced with permission by The Bernstein Family Trust *


Jon said...

The drummer on left is about to call for ramming speed!

Simon St. Laurent said...

Ben Hur, yes!