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June 1995, Week 4


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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Krin Gabbard <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 23 Jun 1995 16:20:52 -0400
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
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               State University of New York at Stony Brook
                       Stony Brook, NY 10025
                                            Krin Gabbard
                                            Associate Professor
                                            Comparative Literature
                                            212 749-1631
                                            23-Jun-1995 04:20pm EDT
TO:    Remote Addressee                     ( [log in to unmask] )
Subject: Re: Diegetic
Just to expand a little the ongoing discussion of matters
diegetic, I would like to ask my colleagues to help me construct
an informal history of film soundtracks in which diegetic music
seems to become extradiegetic.  Fritz Lang does it at the end of
_Blue Gardenia_ with the Prelude and Liebestod theme from
Wagner's _Tristan und Isolde_.  The music twice begins
diegetically, on a phonograph and as piped-in music at an airport
restaurant, and is then shifted to the extradiegetic score; in
another case it begins as background music and is subsequently
assimilated as the diegetic sound of a record.  It also moves
seamlessly between two diegetic sources, from the airport
speakers to a record-player.  Probably a more famous example is
the Rolling Stones record that starts out on a transistor radio
in _Apocalypse Now_ and then "expands" to sound much more like
conventional extradiegetic music.  Something very similar happens
with the Johnny Hartman records in _The Bridges of Madison
County_: on at least two occasions they are first heard in thin
sound from a small radio before they suddenly adopt full fidelity
and function extradiegetically.  Any other examples?
Krin Gabbard
SUNY Stony Brook
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