program notes by composition > S > Star Wars Suite

Star Wars Suite

John Williams/arr. Donald Hunsberger

Star Wars Suite is a collection of music from the first trilogy of Star Wars movies: “Star Wars” (1977), “The Empire Strikes Back” (1980), and “Return of the Jedi” (1983). Coming December 18: Episode VII “The Force Awakens.”

John Williams (b.1932) is a pre-eminent composer, conductor, and pianist. He is a graduate of UCLA and Juilliard. His most familiar style may be described as a form of neoromanticism, inspired by large-scale orchestral music &emdash in the style of Tchaikovsky or Richard Wagner's compositions and their concept of leitmotif. (Leitmotif is a recurrent theme throughout a musical or literary com- position that is associated with a particular person, idea, or situation.)

Williams has composed some of the most popular and recognizable film scores of all time, including Jaws , E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial , Indiana Jones , Close Encounters of the Third Kind , Superman , Home Alone , Jurassic Park , Schindler's List , Saving Private Ryan and Harry Potter . He has also composed theme music for the Olympic Games, NBC Sunday Night Football , NBC Nightly News , television series and numerous classical concerti and other works for orchestral ensembles and solo instruments. He was principal conductor of the Boston Pops from 1980-93. He has won 22 Grammy Awards, five Academy Awards, four Golden Globes and three Emmys.

Last updated on November 16, 2015 by Palatine Concert Band