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Moments in television

In television scholarship, sound and image have been attended to in different ways, but image has historically dominated. The chapters gathered here attend to both: they weigh the impact and significance of specific choices of sound and image, explore their interactions, and assess their roles in establishing meaning and style. The contributors address a wide range of technical and stylistic elements relating to the television image. They consider production design choices, the spatial organisation of the television frame and how camera movements position and reposition parts of the visible world. They explore mise-en-scène, landscapes and backgrounds, settings and scenery, and costumes and props. They attend to details of actors’ performances, as well as lighting design and patterns of colour and scale. As regards sound, each chapter distinguishes different components on a soundtrack, delineating diegetic from non-diegetic sound, and evaluating the roles of elements such as music, dialogue, voice-over, bodily sounds, performed and non-performed sounds. Attending to sound design, contributors address motifs, repetition and rhythm in both music and non-musical sound. Consideration is also given to the significance of quietness, the absence of sounds, and silence. Programmes studied comprise The Twilight Zone, Inspector Morse, Children of the Stones, Dancing on the Edge, Road, Twin Peaks: The Return, Bodyguard, The Walking Dead and Mad Men. Sound and image are evaluated across these examples from a wide range of television forms, formats and genres, which includes series, serial and one-off dramas, children’s programmes, science fiction, thrillers and detective shows.

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Roger Singleton-Turner

. As far as music in television is concerned, there are, according to a representative of the UK’s MCPS-PRS Alliance (see page 368 ), four basic ways of using music in a film or TV production, whatever the source: Titles and credits . Featured : music used to accompany sequences but not obviously within (or part of) the action. This would include all mood music for car chases, action scenes and love scenes, the stabbing in Hitchcock’s Psycho , repeated leitmotifs such as the shark theme music in Jaws , and so on. Incidental : contrary to some definitions

in Cue and Cut
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Sound / image
Jonathan Bignell
Sarah Cardwell
, and
Lucy Fife Donaldson

, referencing the connections between science fiction and the avant-garde techniques of musique concrète (Donnelly 2007 ). The music's themes and style remained constant for twenty-six years, and, when Doctor Who was re-booted in 2005, so was the music. While the specific connotations of music can indicate genre, tone or mood in the same way as in cinema, for example, the repetition of serial and series forms in television, and the longevity of some programmes, give music in television a special significance. Television sound isolates and intensifies

in Sound / image
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Jonathan Bignell

convention affect the viewer’s available strategies for interpretation. For example, the use of music in Ghost Trio can be connected to the manipulation of visual form in the play. Just as the manipulation of rectangular shapes foregrounds the means of representation and the spatial codes of the performance space and of the television screen, the presence of the tape recorder in Ghost Trio may be a reflexive commentary on the use of music in television. The conventional codes for the use of off-screen music in television are similar to those in cinema. Music is used as

in Beckett on screen
Jazz music and images of the past in Stephen Poliakoff’s Dancing on the Edge
Will Stanford Abbiss

, finds Pamela, the band's success is further bound to hopes for British society. Concurrently, the cutaways to Wesley's plight challenge this hope. The culmination of the sequence confirms the band's music as a structuring element of the drama, above dialogue or visual spectacle. The increased primacy of music in television drama can be understood through Ronald Rodman's concept of postmodern ‘relativized music’. This concept adapts Michel Chion's theory of relativising speech in film, transforming Chion's seven techniques from verbal to musical

in Sound / image
Constructing the televisual pop community in the GDR
Edward Larkey

reality within a politically affirm­ative framework. Henceforth, it was possible to feature a measure of rock and pop music in television programming as long as it represented neither the largest nor the most controversial element of the music selected. From the mid-1980s until the demise of the country in 1989, GDR pop music moved closer to more commercial models typical of capitalist cultural industries (Hesmondhalgh, 2002: 56), with a small but healthy ‘independent’ sector harbouring narratives more critical of GDR reality than previously permitted. Despite this, it

in Popular television in authoritarian Europe
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Jonathan Bignell

-diegetic music in television, since diegetic music is signified as such by the visible presence of a functioning playback device or some other evidence of its source. Non-diegetic music, on the other hand, is conventionally used as a cue to tone and narrative turning-points by being laid over the beginnings and endings of shots and subordinated to dialogue or voice-over. Neither of these possibilities are clearly fixed in Ghost Trio . The significance of the cassette player as a source of sound is indicated in the holograph of the play (Beckett undated f) by the fact that

in Beckett on screen
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Brian McFarlane
Anthony Slide

Featuring more than 6,500 articles, including over 350 new entries, this fifth edition of The Encyclopedia of British Film is an invaluable reference guide to the British film industry. It is the most authoritative volume yet, stretching from the inception of the industry to the present day, with detailed listings of the producers, directors, actors and studios behind a century or so of great British cinema.

Brian McFarlane's meticulously researched guide is the definitive companion for anyone interested in the world of film. Previous editions have sold many thousands of copies, and this fifth instalment will be an essential work of reference for universities, libraries and enthusiasts of British cinema.

in The Encyclopedia of British Film