Storyteller Soundtrack - Rachel Portman - Varese Sarabande

Varese Sarabande Is Releasing Jim Henson’s The Storyteller Soundtrack!

Beginning as I do at the beginning and starting as I must at the start. Let me show you fate through the announcement that Varese Sarabande is releasing Jim Henson’s The Storyteller soundtrack at the end of this month. An epic release I will certainly add, friends. As on the 27th of April, the legendary record label will release a deluxe box set featuring not just Rachel Portman’s score for the 1987 series. In addition they have also included 1990’s The Storyteller soundtrack for The Greek Myths!

[Via] Richard Maysundo

At the beginning of this post I had a bit of fun changing a quote from the 1987 episode entitled Sapsorrow. All my silliness aside, I am indeed so very excited for this wonderful box set. Not just because I am a fan of all things Jim Henson of course. The truth is The Storyteller has certainly meant a great deal to me. I can vividly recall in fact, sitting on the living room floor, my homework spread out in front of me, when I caught my first episode. Which was Hans My Hedgehog.

[Via] Jim Henson Company

I was truly taken aback when this series of folklore stories didn’t take off. The beauty of what the Henson Company, the late and great screenwriter Anthony Minghella, as well as Rachel Portman created. Well, simply put… it was indeed astounding.

Naturally these adapted folk tales could have come across rather stale. But thanks to the writing. In addition to the astounding acting. Featuring everyone from Sir John Hurt, the titular Storyteller himself, to Jonathan Pryce (Brazil), Miranda Richardson (The Crying Game), and Jane Horrocks (The Witches) to name a few.
Storyteller Soundtrack - Derek Jacobi

We of course had Rachel Portman’s exceptional scores for improving an already memorable piece of entertainment. Who it so happens had this to say about her work in the Varese Sarabande press release:

“I felt I had real freedom to go as dark as I wanted, musically,” explained Portman. “I didn’t shy away from being really sad, or really dark, or really happy. I think that really matched the way the whole series was done, and the scripts. It always kind of ends in minor. I don’t know why. They all come back to a sad chord at the end.”

For myself, I can only say that while Rachel knowingly says she would finish off the music with a sad chord. I would offer however that it doesn’t make me think of something sorrowful. But a fitting musical chord, signifying the end of the tale itself. Although having said that, perhaps in The Soldier and Death there is indeed a bit of melancholy to the score. Although in this clip from the actual episode, you will hear some of that dark score of Portman’s.

[Via] Jim Henson Company

Friends, in a perfect world, the television series would have not only become a success. It would in addition have been picked up for many, many seasons. While of course it does have a loyal fan base, the news that Varese Sarabande was releasing The Storyteller soundtrack is an incredible thing. Fate as it were has obviously been kind to us fans of Henson and stellar soundtracks, right?
Storyteller Soundtrack - Sir John Hurt

So this is what is going to be included in that 3-CD deluxe box set:
Disc I Features:

  • Main Title (Extended Version) (0:41)
  • Hans My Hedgehog (Suite A) (4:19)
  • Hans My Hedgehog (Suite B) (6:22)
  • A Story Short (Suite A) (6:50)
  • A Story Short (Suite B) (5:19)
  • Fearnot (Suite A) (5:27)
  • Fearnot (Suite B) (6:37)
  • The Luck Child (Suite A) (6:17)
  • The Luck Child (Suite B) (5:09)
  • The Heartless Giant (Suite A) (6:50)
  • The Heartless Giant (Suite B) (6:53)
  • End Title (0:34)

Disc II Includes:

  • Main Title with Narration (featuring John Hurt) (0:41)
  • The Soldier and Death (Suite A) (5:04)
  • The Soldier and Death (Suite B) (7:59)
  • The True Bride (Suite A) (5:41)
  • The True Bride (Suite B) (6:18)
  • The Three Ravens (Suite A) (7:34)
  • The Three Ravens (Suite B) (7:59)
  • Sapsorrow (Suite A) (5:18)
  • Sapsorrow (Suite B) (6:03)
  • Main Title (Short Version) (0:37)
  • Unused Bumper A (0:12)
  • Unused Bumper B (0:10)

Disc III Contains:

  • The Storyteller: Greek Myths Main Titles (UK Version) (0:39)
  • Theseus & The Minotaur (Suite A) (7:23)
  • Theseus & The Minotaur (Suite B) (9:13)
  • Perseus & The Gorgon (Suite A) (7:00)
  • Perseus & The Gorgon (Suite B) (7:21)
  • Daedalus & Icarus (Suite A) (6:42)
  • Daedalus & Icarus (Suite B) (7:18)
  • Orpheus & Eurydice (Suite A) (8:47)
  • Orpheus & Eurydice (Suite B) (6:57)
  • Main Titles (US Version) (0:33)

Disc III Bonus Tracks:

  • Theseus (Suite) (1:34)
  • Orpheus (Suite) (1:29)

As well as a 32-page booklet featuring interviews with not just Portman. Also featured are Brian and Lisa Henson, Producer Duncan Kenworthy, Dominic Minghella (Anthony’s Brother), and Director Steve Barron. Incredible behind the scenes recollections and stories, put together thanks to NPR’s Tim Greiving.

Here however is what you need to do. Hop on over to Varese Sarabande, right this very second and pre-order your copy today. It is naturally a limited run so do not wait too long, okay?

Now then, how about a chance to listen to Rachel Portman yourself? She does not mention her work on The Storyteller soundtrack. But the Academy Award winning composer shares delightful insights on her work nonetheless!

[Via] CMusic TV


Editor at Retroist
Searching through the alleys for useful knowledge in the city of Nostalgia. Huge cinema fanatic and sometimes carrier of the flame for the weirding ways of 80s gaming, toys, and television. When his wife lets him he is quite happy sitting in the corner eating buckets of beef jerky.

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