Album: Anna Karenina: Original Music from the Motion Picture

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Anna Karenina: Original Music from the Motion Picture

Artist: Dario Marianelli
Label: Decca Classics

There are several themes in the score of Anna Karenina: sometimes appearing alone, often intersecting, their paths running alongside for a while. Those paths are shared by the characters in the story as they walk towards or away from convention, pretence, happiness, guilt, love, fun, and even truth.

In a very important sense, the musical motifs do not represent the characters themselves I prefer to think of them as spirits, perhaps demons, unseen, signposting the way, or simply bearing witness to the events.

Most of the action, in our version of Tolstoy’s novel, takes place in an abandoned theatre, upon or around a stage—a symbol of the make-believe life of the Russian aristocracy at the end of the 19th century. Having convention and pretence confined within the boundaries of an old theatre, hints of course to another life, one that must exist somewhere outside the confines of that stage. The music of Anna Karenina is perched between those two worlds.

For the curious: track 8: “Beroza” (Birch) is a very old Russian folk song: of its many versions, the one I used talks of a young woman deceiving an older husband. For track 19: “At the Opera” I used Tolstoy’s own words from Anna Karenina, Part II, Chapter XI

Dario Marianelli, 13th August 2012

Related Works

Film:Anna Karenina (2012)

Anna Karenina

Joe Wright

The third collaboration of Academy Award nominee Keira Knightley with acclaimed director Joe Wright, following the award-winning box office successes Pride & Prejudice and Atonement, is a bold, theatrical new vision of the epic story of love, adapted from Leo Tolstoy’s timeless novel by Academy Award winner Tom Stoppard. The story powerfully explores the capacity for love that surges through the human heart. As Anna (Ms. Knightley) questions her happiness and marriage, change comes to all around her.

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