The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Monday, January 20, 2020

Monday Music "O Fortuna/Carmina Burana by Carl Orff

I am continuing my string of "bugaloo" songs.  This discussion was started in the "Monster Hunter Nation, Hunters Unite", it is a facebook group with enthusiast of the ILOH "International Lord of Hate" A.K.A Larry Correia.  We were talking about what song would we use if we looked out of our window or glanced at our security camera and saw this.....
One of the alphabet bois lining up to take down your house...What would be your "Valhalla" song and you would set it up to play as you load up magazines and prepare yourself.
I decided to roll with the song that I heard the first time when I watched the movie "Excalibur" and it was toward the final scene when King Arthur is restored and become king again because he and the land is one.and he gathers his few knights that were still loyal to face Mordred.  King Arthur and his few knights charge Mordred's forces and the music was haunting and really neat.  I finally used my "google Fu" to find out who sung it.

Excalibur is a 1981 American epic historical fantasy film directed, produced, and co-written by John Boorman that retells the legend of King Arthur and the knights of the Round Table, based on the 15th-century Arthurian romance Le Morte d'Arthur by Thomas Malory. It stars Nigel Terry as Arthur, Nicol Williamson as Merlin, Nicholas Clay as Lancelot, Cherie Lunghi as Guenevere, Helen Mirren as Morgana, Liam Neeson as Gawain, Gabriel Byrne as Uther Pendragon, Corin Redgrave as Cornwall, and Patrick Stewart as Leondegrance. The film is named after the legendary sword of King Arthur that features prominently in Arthurian literature. The film's soundtrack features the music of Richard Wagner and Carl Orff, along with an original score by Trevor Jones.
Excalibur was shot entirely on location in Ireland, employing Irish actors and crew. It has been acknowledged for its importance to the Irish filmmaking industry and for helping launch the film and acting careers of a number of British and Irish actors, including Liam Neeson, Patrick Stewart, Gabriel Byrne and Ciarán Hinds.

Film critics Roger Ebert and Vincent Canby criticized the film's plot and characters, although they and other reviewers praised its visual style. Excalibur opened at number one in the United States, eventually grossing $34,967,437 on a budget of around US$11 million to rank 18th in that year's receipts.

"O Fortuna" is a medieval Latin Goliardic poem written early in the 13th century, part of the collection known as the Carmina Burana. It is a complaint about Fortuna, the inexorable fate that rules both gods and mortals in Roman and Greek mythology.
In 1935–36, "O Fortuna" was set to music by German composer Carl Orff as a part of "Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi", the opening and closing movement of his cantata Carmina Burana. It was first staged by the Frankfurt Opera on 8 June 1937. It opens at a slow pace with thumping drums and choir that drops quickly into a whisper, building slowly in a steady crescendo of drums and short string and horn notes peaking on one last long powerful note and ending abruptly. The tone is modal, until the last nine bars. A performance takes a little over two and a half minutes.
Orff's setting of the poem has influenced and been used in many other works and has been performed by countless classical music ensembles and popular artists. It can be heard in numerous films and television commercials, and has become a staple in popular culture, setting the mood for dramatic or cataclysmic situations. (See also Carl Orff's "O Fortuna" in popular culture.) "O Fortuna" topped a 2009 list of the most-played classical music of the previous 75 years in the United Kingdom.
 André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra performing O Fortuna from Carl Orff's Carmina Burana. For tour dates visit: http://www.andrerieu.com


  1. The absolute best version of "O Fortuna" was a live version performed on the BBC in 1994. It is an hour and 12 minutes on YouTube. A huge choir and full orchestra. Here is a link.


    1. Hey WiTold Pilecki;

      Thank you for the link. I had fun looking at several cuts of the movie and listening to the song. I will listen/look at the link once I am off from work and I start my weekend. I work 12 hours shifts.

  2. "Excaliber" is probably closest to the old tales that formed the basis for "Le Morte d'Arthur" by Mallory. Cut out all the stupid cheesy stuff that people have been adding on and adding on, paring it down to just a 'Good vs Evil' passion play.

    Though knowing the origin of Carmina Burana and having read the translations, yeah, kinda takes the stately out of it, kinda.

    The local ballet company does a ballet based on CB every 4-5 years or so. Really well done, gorgeous score, and totally a mind-blowing experience as the dancers dance the meaning of the poems turned to music.

    Ragnarok Music?

    "Bodies" (Let the Bodies hit the Floor) by Drowning Pool.

    Various Wagnerian lietmotifs, especially from the Ring Cycle, especially 'Twilight of the Gods.'

    "Battle Hymn of the Republic." Dagnabit, just a good inspiring tune, even if it was used by the Yankees...

    But all-time favorite?

    "Chanterai Por Mon Corage" or the "Palastinaleid" off the 'Crusaders en Nomine Domini' album by Estampe. I don't actually sing the words, but if I'm humming it, well, the bodies are about to hit the floor. Always did better in medieval fighting humming those tunes than anything else (fighting is like dancing, goes better with music.)


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