With Twin Peaks coming back to our TV screens next year, fans want to know who’s coming back from the original cast and crew. The same could be said for composer Angelo Badalamenti, whose theme music for the series still evokes shots of sawmills, high waterfalls, rustling pines, and a deep, dark sense of mystery combined with the pangs of doomed romance.
In this selection from an August 19, 2016 concert from the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Anthony Weeden, Badalamenti’s score is given a chance to stand alone as a composition without the visuals. Bathed in red light, the orchestra looks appropriately Lynchian, and all that’s missing is a large red curtain and zigzag flooring. The arrangement hews close to Badalamenti’s, though his small combo from the original soundtrack gets expanded to a full orchestra, with kettledrums, glockenspiel, harp, and concert bells. However, when “Laura Palmer’s Theme” segues into the title theme, the two-note twang is still played on electric guitar. (You can’t mess with that!)
In this context, Badalamenti’s nods to Bernard Hermann’s Vertigo score are even more apparent, especially in the delicate, swelling love melody that is always in danger of sad collapse. The concert also featured selections from other great television soundtracks, including Game of Thrones, Homeland, Breaking Bad, Six Feet Under, and more. The whole concert can be watched here.
“We had a fabulous time performing it —a very special part of the evening,” Anthony Weeden is quoted as saying on the go-to Welcome to Twin Peaks site. And he added, “I can’t wait for the new series!”
Neither can we, Mr. Weeden.
Ted Mills is a freelance writer on the arts who currently hosts the artist interview-based FunkZone Podcast. You can also follow him on Twitter at @tedmills, read his other arts writing at tedmills.com and/or watch his films here.