Home > Reviews > THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE – Dimitri Tiomkin

THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE – Dimitri Tiomkin

October 25, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

MOVIE MUSIC UK CLASSICS

Original Review by Craig Lysy

Director Anthony Mann of El Cid fame sought to reprise his success with another ancient epic, this time set in the waning days of the Roman Empire. He assembled a stellar cast that included Sophia Loren (Lucilla), Alec Guinness (Marcus Aurelius), Stephen Boyd (Livius), Christopher Plummer (Commodus), James Mason (Tiomedes) and Omar Sharif as Sohamus. Regretfully, the film was less epic and more a wooden documentary as it plodded through its three-hour plus running time. The story centers on the intrigue and contest for love and power in the court of Emperor Marcus Aurelius. After the emperor is assassinated, a power mad, vain and unstable Commodus assumes the throne and begins a reign of terror, ultimately banishing all who earned his disfavor including Livius, Lucilla and Tiomedes. The film was a commercial failure bringing in only 20% of its 19 million dollar production costs. The score however achieved critical success being nominated by both the Academy of Motion Pictures and The Golden Globes. Tiomkin succeeded in winning a well-deserved Golden Globe.

Producer Samuel Bronson usual choice for composer was Miklós Rózsa who had collaborated with him on King of Kings and El Cid. However he suffered a falling out with Rózsa over unapproved edits of his El Cid score and so had to recruit a new composer. Tiomkin accepted the offer with great enthusiasm and created an epic score that featured several themes. Tiomkin employed a massive orchestra that featured 46 violins, 24 violas, 20 celli, 10 basses and a double horn section! He stated “My plan was to react spontaneously to the dramatic element which I gradually began to appreciate in the Roman Empire.”

“Prelude” introduces the score’s primary theme, which animates the film, The Fall of Love Theme, a binary modal melody (A phrase minor modal and B phrase major modal) that speaks of the love between Livius and Lucilla that will never be realized. This presentation of the rich and lyrical theme, which features both its A and B phrases, opens powerfully on cathedral organ that is then joined by tutti strings and then full orchestra. A mandolin joins to double the melody, which concludes with a baroque flourish. Wow, this powerful and dramatic cue is a score highlight and a stunning introduction. Bravo!

“Aurelius Awaits the Dawn” displays a forlorn Marcus Aurelius contemplating an uncertain future as the sun rises over a cold winter laden forests. This cue is a woodwinds lover’s dream come true. Tiomkin introduces the Emperor’s Theme, a minor modal theme here born by solo flute, solo oboe and kindred woodwinds that speaks of a deep well of sadness. The cue closes with strings and glockenspiel, which join to add both warm and hope as the sun breaks over the horizon. “The Arrival of Livius” features Marcus Aurelius’ adopted son Livius entering the imperial compound. The music opens with The Power of Rome Theme, a power anthem replete with bravado horn fare and pounding timpani. This anthem operates on two levels; the transpersonal where it is emblematic of Roman military power, and the personal as the embodiment of the noble Livius. In this rendition, the theme plays not as a march as you would expect, but instead a lively scherzo. The music gradually subsides as mandolin, woodwinds and tremolo strings underscore a conversation between Marcus and Livius. At 3:02 we segue into “Lucilla and Livius” where Lucilla and Livius are reunited as she offers alms to the goddess Vesta. We hear solo cello abounding in sadness perform The Fall of Love Theme, which features mandolin, woodwind and glockenspiel accents.

“Pax Romana” features countless foreign dignitaries and their royal guards assembling to pay homage to their overlord Marcus Aurelius. The cue introduces the amazing major modal Pax Romana Theme. The music is a processional march that abounds with repeating phrasing of heraldic horn fare, trilling woodwinds, xylophone, glockenspiel, rolling timpani, snare drums and diverse ethnic accents. Tiomkin would often play this glorious cue as a concert piece (as he does here) and I must say that this is a wonderful score highlight that ends with a flourish!

“Cleander Listens/Caesar’s Decision” reveals Marcus advising Lucilla and Livius of his decision to appoint Livius as his heir instead of Commodus while a hidden Cleander listens. Tiomkin scores this tender and lyrical scene with a father–daughter sensibility as we hear a wonderful interplay of gentile strings, solo oboe and kindred woodwinds. “Livius Leaves the Fort” features Livius riding out in his chariot to greet Commodus who is coming to join his father. Flutter-tongue horns open this lively bravado and percussive piece filled with xylophone and tambourine accents. At 0:37 we segue into “Caesar and Lucilla” where Marcus expresses his desire for her future happiness. This elegant and yet portentous cue opens with harpsichord, which ushers in the Fall of Love Theme, whose A phrase is heard first with woodwinds and then strings countered by mandolin and tolling bell.

“The Dawn of Love” features Livius greeting his brother Commodus. Tiomkin introduces his major modal Friendship Theme that speaks of the genuine bond between the brothers. This bright and effusive cue features lush animato strings resounding with joy and happiness. At 2:09 we segue into “Drinking Companions” where Tiomkin continues to expand upon his Friendship Theme, which continues atop lush strings and trumpet with glockenspiel and harpsichord counters. These wonderful cues, written in 1964 and which I consider score highlights, are really quite remarkable to me. Tiomkin clearly chose to highlight the bond that existed between these two men non-traditionally, choosing a classic love theme that is expressed by violins in a very lush and effusive manner. This was very nicely conceived and I must say controversial for its time. “Barbarian Women” continues the extended scene as a drunken Commodus forces himself on a barbarian women. Dissonant strings and a plaintive oboe convey the unease of a dismayed Livius as he watches. At 0:24 tremolo strings play as Livius tells Commodus that their father has chosen him as his heir. Fluttering flutes, distressed strings and a bell toll convey Commodus’ reaction to his disinheritance. Tiomkin infuses dark textural colors and dissonant horn sounds as the melodic line descends to a dark, low register bass line with ominous timpani and fluttering woodwind counters. We feel anguish as the melodic line ebbs and flows reflecting the torrent of emotions swirling in Commodus. At 3:28 we segue into “Lovers Reunited” where solo flute, tremulous strings and glockenspiel accents play The Fall of Love Theme. The theme is darkly colored, portentous and laden with a deep and tragic sadness.

In “Preparation for Battle/The Signal to March” Livius and Commodus assemble their men as they prepare to leave the fort to wage war against the barbarians. Flutter tongue horns sound and are joined by ostinato strings and heraldic horn fare as the brothers assemble their respective troops. Most interesting is that Tiomkin does not score this scene alla Marcia but instead introduces a classic baroque fugue! This approach serves to provide a more animated sound and lightness to the primary theme. We hear strings, woodwinds and spritely harpsichord accents that flow against recurring horn counters. This cue is innovative, well conceived and for me another score highlight. Continuing on in “The Mysterious Forest” we see Commodus’ force in the lead as they walk within the depths of the snow covered forest. Opening with solo alto flute joined by tremolo strings, Tiomkin creates a pastoral aura with undercurrents of trepidation. The mysterioso melodic line is joined by flute, harpsichord, marimba, vibraphone and chimes, which create a beautiful yet tense passage. I believe Tiomkin perfectly attenuated his music to this scene. We then flow into the next scene “Barbarian Ambush” where all hell breaks out as Commodus is ambushed. This superb tour de force action cue is a percussion lover’s dream that features a ferocious interplay between the Barbarian Motif and The Power of Rome Theme. A fierce descending string line launches this unrelenting kinetic passage. In scoring this battle scene Tiomkin chose to contrast the barbarians with the Romans by employing a primitive rhythmic percussive motif that features timpani, snare drums, tambourine, suspended cymbals and xylophone to represent the barbarians. We are treated to a wonderful interplay of themes when we hear the Roman counter at 1:12 minutes with the more classical trumpet led The Power of Rome Theme. This cue is well conceived and of superior quality.

“Lucilla’s Sacrifice” is a cue of sublime beauty and a score highlight. It reveals Lucilla receiving word from King Sohamus of Armenia that her father had betrothed her to him to cement the alliance of their two empires. Tiomkin scores the pathos of Lucilla’s despair and Marcus Aurelius’ deep regret with a stirring poignancy. Solo flute, glockenspiel, harpsichord and kindred woodwinds join and create an exotic ambiance as Lucilla meets King Sohamus. Violins, solo oboe and woodwinds counter in a dissonant descending line as Lucilla hears the devastating news. Violins, violas and celli continue her plaintive melodic line until muted trumpets usher in The Fall of Love Theme at 1:30. Tiomkin adds both richness and complexity to this theme by introducing a contrapuntal descending violin line, which powerfully captures her despair and hopelessness. Harp and muted percussion join the contrapuntal line to end the cue with a tragic finality. The construct of this cue is well-conceived, brilliantly executed and offers testimony to Tiomkin’s genius. Bravo!

“The Execution” is a tense action cue that concerns a fight between Livius and Commodus after Livius orders the execution of some of Commodus’ soldiers for cowardice during battle. Militaristic horns, snare drums and cymbals lead a descending minor modal melodic line with dissonant woodwinds and tremolo strings as the cowards are executed. At 1:59 we segue into “The Conspiracy” where a group of Commodus’ men conspire to assassinate the Emperor before he can name Livius as his heir. The cue is textural and features low register woodwinds adorned with chimes, glockenspiel, harpsichord accents and muted horns. “Apple of Death” is a binary cue, which features Cleander giving Marcus a poisoned apple. The cue is scored with a dark potency carried by tremolo strings, flutter-tongue flutes, woodwinds and muted horns. We scene change at 0:50 to “Lucilla’s Sorrow”, which features plaintive strings that swell and become impassioned as a distraught Lucilla runs to Livius to tell him of her fate. The Fall of Love Theme plays and features a solo violin as a stunned and desperate Livius pleads with Lucilla to refuse her father’s decree and run away with him. At 3:16 we switch scenes to Lucilla joining her dying father. We hear a somber melodic line carried by doloroso strings whose energy weakens and ebbs, mirroring Marcus Aurelius’ fading life force. At 4:02 we hear an impassioned descending string line as he passes unto death. This grieving string lead melodic line continues to conclude the cue and is perfectly attenuated to Lucilla’s anguish.

“Profundo” reveals Lucilla and Livius in a torch lit funeral procession as the body of Caesar is taken to a funeral pyre. We hear a descending string line with chime accents that play over a solemn and steady drumbeat, which captures the grief of Lucilla and Livius. Playing against this is a contrapuntal ascending chromatic string line replete with bell tolls and horns, which portends their uncertain fate in an empire ruled by Commodus. This is an emotionally complex cue that speaks to both a sad present and an uncertain future, which Tiomkin scores brilliantly. “The Undoubted Caesar” features Livius handing Commodus the funereal torch – an acknowledgement of his submission to Commodus as Caesar – who sets the pyre aflame. A dark and tense line carried by woodwinds, horns, timpani and metallic percussive accents highlights the tension between the brothers. Gradually we hear an intensifying grim, discordant and syncopated line replete with grotesque dissonant horns and bell tolls as Commodus absorbs the import of Livius’ submission. Yet from out this cacophony arises hope born upon the wings of a now celebratory The Power of Rome Theme as Commodus revels in his uncontested role as Caesar. This in turn flows into the Friendship Theme, which concludes the cue as Commodus declares Livius as Pro-counsel. Regretfully this wonderful cue was cut from the film.

The first half of the film concludes with “The Roman Forum/Coronation/Triumph and End of Act 1” in Rome where Commodus is carried in regal splendor to the temple of Jupiter.  Folks, this is a masterpiece cue that can be reasonably argued as the best cue Tiomkin ever wrote.  It is written in classical Baroque style, extraordinarily complex, multi-thematic, abounding in complex orchestration and potent in its wondrous use of contrapuntal writing.  We open with the Wonder of Rome Theme, an extraordinary pompous, regal heraldic fanfare alla Marcia that segues at 1:04 into a string laden and more lyrical presentation of the Pax Romana Theme.  Woodwinds and horns take up the melody with more syncopation until we transition to The Glory of Commodus Theme, which abounds in trumpeting fanfare and potent drums alla Marcia.  For the remaining part of the cue Tiomkin indulges us in glorious interplay of these two new themes that celebrate the coronation of Commodus.  The cue concludes with portentous timpani playing a repeating minor third with concluding fanfare as Commodus makes an offering to Jupiter.  I cannot understate how exquisite and extraordinary this cue is. Bravo!

“Intermission: The Fall of Love” is a full and sumptuous rendering of The Fall of Love Theme, which is exquisite in it sublime beauty. Folks, this is a love theme that will stand the test of time. “Notturno” reprises the Emperor’s Theme as Lucilla and King Sohama secure “Meditations”, the writings of Marcus Aurelius for posterity. At 1:54 we segue with dissonance into a scene where Commodus heralds the return of gladiatorial combat to be financed by higher taxes upon the Eastern provinces. “Death March/Balomar’s Barbarian Attack” is another astounding action cue that features a ferocious interplay between the horn rich The Power of Rome Theme and the percussive Barbarian Motif. This is really powerful writing.

“Lucilla Visits Commodus” is a portentous cue and filled with tension as Lucilla visits her brother. Opening with a plaintive oboe, strings take up the melodic line and are joined by woodwinds. At 1:25 in “The Gates of Rome”, warm fanfare sound as Commodus greets a returning Livius at the city gates. An interlude of dark strings and woodwinds reveal undercurrents of tension between the brothers. We conclude with The Fall of Love Theme, which features beautiful oboe, flute and violin solos. “Addio” is a beautiful choral rendering of The Fall of Love Theme that plays as Lucilla and Livius discuss Commodus’ offer to allow their marriage if they abandon their challenge of him in the Senate. In “Livius’ Success” the Senate approves his motion to grant barbarians land and citizenship and a happy Lucilla gives him a victory embrace. Light woodwinds, strings and harpsichord dance and usher in The Fall of Love Theme, which is truncated at 0:34 in “The Last Goodbye” by a dissonant horn chord and tremolo strings as aggrieved Commodus enters the Senate. Commodus strips Livius of his command, orders him to the northern front and also orders Lucilla to return to her husband. Tiomkin scores this scene with a lush display of The Fall of Love Theme, which features mandolins and contrapuntal woodwinds. We conclude with poignancy with a solo violin statement. This cue is sublime in its beauty and deeply moving.

“Exile” opens a ternary cue with dissonant horns with a melodic line taken up by dolorosa strings as Livius negotiates peace with the barbarians. When he fails, the dissonant horn and percussion line returns as the barbarians leave. We flow into a plaintive The Fall of Love Theme born on solo flute and mandolin as a despondent Livius pines for Lucilla. At 1:52 in “Morning” we segue into a march as soldiers come to escort Livius back to Rome. On the way he encounters his old friend Tiomedes and we are treated to a major modal melodic line carried by tender strings, woodwinds and harpsichord. The music sours and reprises The Fall of Love Theme when Livius is told of the famine in Rome. We shift scenes at 3:10 to conclude the cue with “The Prophecy” where we see a despondent Livius viewing a desolate and starving Rome. Tiomkin lowers a tragic and dark pall with strings and muted trumpets as the melodic line assumes a funereal timbre. His music is perfectly attenuated to the film’s imagery.

“The Court Musicians” features exotic but gentile source music carried beautifully by woodwinds, marimba, mandolin, piano and light percussion with glockenspiel accents. “Meeting in the East” ushers in another ternary cue where we see Livius arriving in Armenia to reaffirm their pact of friendship. Clearly channeling Borodin, Tiomkin uses animato horns, pounding timpani and tambourine to create a wondrous, exotic and ornate soundscape abounding in oriental coloring. The music subsides and at 1:25 segues into “Disillusionment” where the lovers are reunited. But the joy is fleeting as Livius rejects Lucilla’s entreaty to join in rebellion against her brother. Lush strings underscore the scene and usher in The Fall of Love Theme, which lacks passion and never culminates as the lovers realize the futility of their love as bells toll. At 4:03 horn fare restores a Roman identity to the music as trumpets declare the Power of Rome Theme as Livius rides forth to return to Rome. We shift scenes at 4:27 to “Armenian Treachery” as Armenian troops break the friendship pact and attack the Romans. Tiomkin returns to channeling Borodin as we are again treated to powerful action writing replete with spirited horns, pounding timpani and tambourine all swirling with an exotic and oriental coloring. Bravo!

“Persian Battle” opens a binary cue, which is an action lover’s dream come true and a score highlight. The scene reveals the Romans in a pitched battle for survival against Armenian and Persian troops. This masterful action cue features both a collision of cultures as well as themes (West vs East). The music is dramatic with a kinetic percussive potency, complex and rich in its use of orchestral accents and colors, and wondrous in its contrapuntal power as the trumpet led The Power of Rome Theme collides with the percussive driven Armenian Theme. It just does not get better than this! As King Sohamus is slain at 4:32 to a drum roll and bell toll, we hear an impassioned The Fall of Love Theme rise up with urgency as Livius races to free Lucilla from captivity. At 5:25 in “Return to Home” a scene shift reveals our lovers travelling back to Rome to their theme, now played with a sad restraint as they prepare to confront Commodus. The cue concludes with woodwinds, strings, muted horns and rolling timpani as Livius rejects a command by Commodus to crucify his prisoners and instead orders the arrest of Commodus’ representative.

“Timonides’ Triumph” opens a wondrous ternary cue as Tiomedes and barbarian troops bring food to the starving Roman masses. Heraldic horns supported by woodwinds, lyrical strings, glockenspiel accents and pipe organ provide the Celebration Theme, a joyous major modal statement with a pervasive religioso coloring. A 1:09 we segue into “Barbarian Celebration” which features the barbarians in a celebratory dance affirming their union with Rome. Timpani and tambourine join the melodic line blending the exotic and religioso elements in a beautiful synergy. At 1:45 dark chords and timpani usher in “Massacre” where Commodus’ troops attack the barbarians. Furious strings and horns propel the action until 1:55 when Tiomedes is slain and Tiomkin shifts to the opening religioso Celebration Theme that is now joined by pizzicato strings and harpsichord as a stirring elegy. This remarkably inspiring cue just brings quivers and is yet another score highlight.

“Resurrection” features the lovers grieving the death of Tiomedes followed by Livius’ departure to confront Commodus alone. French horns and tremolo strings usher in the Celebration Theme, which still bears a religioso quality, but now however is performed as a threnody. Lamentoso woodwinds, harpsichord and strings carry the melodic line that is accented with muted horns and bell tolls. As the cue comes to closure, radiant strings and burnished trumpets convey the hope that all may yet turn out right. Folks this is really one of the most beautiful and inspiring pieces of the score. I am just profoundly moved by this cue.

“The God’s Laugh” is an innovative and textural cue that speaks to Tiomkin’s genius in discerning the scene’s emotional narrative as we see a raving mad Commodus declaring himself a god. Tritone timpani, eerie repeating ethereal glissandi, mysterioso woodwinds, tremolo strings and Novachord create a disturbing ambiance to underscore Commodus’ madness. The Power of Rome Theme rises with bell tolls as Livius attempts to reason with Commodus, but it is for naught as the opening phrasing returns and degenerates atop woodwinds into a discordant cacophony replete with repeating harsh chords and bell tolls. God, this is simply amazing!

  “Death of Polybius” features dissention in the ranks as Commodus attempts to subvert Livius’ command of the legions. Pounding timpani are joined by furious horns as the battle unfolds. At 0:57 an interlude of strings and woodwinds ushers in the Emperor’s Theme born by lamentoso strings as Victorinus tells Lucilla that her father’s noble dream is dead. At 1:56 rapid and furious strings and blaring horns and trilling woodwinds propel a flight sequence as Lucilla, who grieves at the collapse of her father’s dream, grabs a dagger and rides a chariot into the city. “Roman Celebration” opens the fast paced cue with animato horns sounding atop pounding timpani, tambourine and furious strings as an aroused coliseum crowd is about to bear witness to Livius being burned alive. At 0:25 we segue into “Tarantella”, a traditional Italian style folkdance performed in 6/8 meter. The fast paced melodic line is string driven with spritely woodwinds, horns with tambourine syncopation and glockenspiel accents. An interlude of gentle strings and woodwinds provides a prelude to a plaintive repetition of the opening bars of The Fall of Love Theme. The melody is shattered by the return of the Tarantella, which restores the cue’s frenzied rhythmic pacing. At 2:34 the B phrase of the Tarantella emerges on mandolins, which adds an incredible lightness of being to the music. We soon segue back into the A phrase of the Tarantella and bear witness to an amazing musical construct. Slowly but inexorably Tiomkin introduces The Fall of Love Theme, which plays as counterpoint to the Tarantella, joining in an astounding danza macabra as Lucilla prepares to murder Commodus. This cue is wondrous in its complexity and thematic interplay, and offers testimony to Tiomkin’s genius. This is a masterpiece cue folks.

In “Commodus Kills His Father” Lucilla’s attempt to kill Commodus is misdirected at a hooded Verulus who deflects her stab. When he refuses her entreaty to kill Commodus, stating that he is his son, an outraged Commodus kills him. A descending horn line with snare drums and woodwinds usher in a timpani roll as Verulus is slain. As his life ebbs tender woodwinds express his paternal love. Tiomkin then reprises the madness phrasing heard in “The Gods Laugh” as an insane Commodus is revealed to all. The cue concludes with a fragment of Emperor’s Theme, now performed portentously and spelling doom. “Commodus Deified” is set in the Roman Forum and features a Lucilla and Livius chained with barbarians and awaiting a fiery execution. This is a stunning multi-thematic cue that opens in regal celebratory fashion and features the “Pax Romana Theme”, the Wonder of Rome Theme, and The Glory of Commodus Themes. As the passage develops Tiomkin weaves an ornate tapestry that achieves a sublime expression when his two Roman Forum themes play in counterpoint to each other. As the pompous parade of themes recedes we see Commodus defer Livius’ execution. Faint echoes of the Friendship Theme and The Fall of Love Theme play but are short-lived as Commodus announces that hand-to-hand gladiatorial combat will resolve their dispute. Blaring trumpets and an organ chord sustain end this magnificent cue.

“The Fall of Rome” is the stunning concluding scene of the film where Livius slays Commodus and all hell breaks loose as warring factions fight for control. The cue is a tour de force that once again features a stunning parade and interplay of themes. The cue opens with a descending dissonance as Commodus is slain. The Friendship Theme echoes as his life ebbs, but an orchestral onslaught ensues at 0:57 as he orders everyone killed with his dying breathe. We hear The Fall of Rome Theme build and become truly grandiose when it is taken up by pipe organ with orchestral counterpoint. The action eventually subsides when Livius honors Commodus, but it is short-lived as regal trumpets herald the Wonder of Rome Theme. As Livius and Lucilla leave we hear a resplendent Celebration Theme as the crowd hails their new Caesar. We conclude the cue with the Pax Romana Theme and a final powerful statement of The Fall of Rome Theme. Wow, this final cue is breath taking. “Epilogue” is a wondrous Concert Suite Version of the “Prelude” cue. It is an epic presentation of The Fall of Rome Theme that provides a masterful ending to our journey.

I must thank James Fitzpatrick, Tadlow Music and Prometheus Records for this stunning recording of Tiomkin’s complete score. The digital sound quality is pristine in its clarity and the presentation by Nic Raine and the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra beyond reproach. This is one of the most complex, ornate and multi-thematic scores ever written and enduring testimony to Tiomkin’s genius. The score demonstrates an epic power rarely heard in films today, is perfectly attenuated to the film’s imagery and displays consistent fidelity to the story’s emotional narrative. I cannot understate the magnificence of this film score, which gains Tiomkin immortality. I highly recommend you add this score to your collection.

Rating: *****

Buy the Fall of the Roman Empire soundtrack from the Movie Music UK Store

Track Listing:

  • DISC ONE
  • Fanfares (0:54)
  • Prelude (2:41)
  • Aurelius Awaits the Dawn (2:20)
  • The Arrival of Livius/Lucilla and Livius (5:54)
  • Pax Romana (5:01)
  • Cleander Listens/Caesar’s Decision (2:03)
  • Livius Leaves the Fort/Caesar and Lucilla (3:19)
  • The Dawn of Love/Drinking Companions (5:15)
  • Barbarian Women/Lovers Reunited (5:58)
  • Preparation for Battle/The Signal to March (2:37)
  • The Mysterious Forest (3:21)
  • Barbarian Ambush (3:49)
  • Lucilla’s Sacrifice (3:11)
  • The Execution/The Conspiracy (4:17)
  • Apple of Death/Lucilla’s Sorrow (5:48)
  • Profundo (2:31)
  • The Undoubted Caesar (3:16)
  • The Roman Forum/Coronation/Triumph and End of Act 1 (5:33)
  • DISC TWO
  • Intermission: The Fall of Love (3:13)
  • Notturno (3:32)
  • Death March/Balomar’s Barbarian Attack (4:38)
  • Lucilla Visits Commodus/The Gates of Rome (4:24)
  • Addio (2:33)
  • Livius’ Success/The Last Goodbye (1:14)
  • Exile/Morning/The Prophecy (4:16)
  • The Court Musicians (2:28)
  • Meeting in the East/Disillusionment/Armenian Treachery (5:46)
  • Persian Battle/Return to Home (7:09)
  • Timonides’ Triumph/Barbarian Celebration/Massacre (2:56)
  • Resurrection (3:02)
  • The God’s Laugh (2:42)
  • Death of Polybius (2:33)
  • Roman Celebration/Tarantella (4:42)
  • Commodus Kills His Father (3:01)
  • Commodus Deified (3:46)
  • The Fall of Rome (5:08)
  • Epilogue (Prelude – Concert Suite Version) (3:15)

Running Time: 138 minutes 17 seconds

Prometheus XPCD-120 (1982/2011)

Music and composed by Dimitri Tiomkin. Conducted by Nic Raine. Performed by The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. Original orchestrations by Cecil Bolton, Frank Comstock, Robert Docker, George Parrish, David Tamkin and Herbert Taylor. Recorded and mixed By Jan Holzner. Album produced by James Fitzpatrick.

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  1. October 25, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    This is a fantastic review Craig! I can tell why you’ve been mentioning this score a lot recently. I would love to get this score and this review is very informative. Thanks a lot for such a great review!

    – KK

    • Craig Lysy
      October 25, 2011 at 7:55 pm

      Thanks my friend. When I heard of a rerecording and a complete release I rushed out to buy directly in Europe as I did not want to wait for a later American release. I have always loved this score and the chance to review it a dream come true.

      All the best!

      • October 25, 2011 at 7:58 pm

        Do you know when the American release might come to be? Or perhaps where I could acquire this before the American release? The score seems like its worth the extra money :)

  2. Captain Future
    October 26, 2011 at 12:12 am

    Great review, thanks a lot, Craig! I will definitly go after this one! My more recent aquisitions includes the “Lost Horizon” sampler by Charles Gerhardt. Tiomkin is one of the greatests! Cheers!

  3. Captain Future
    October 26, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    I live in Germany and I just ordered it at Chris’ Soundtrack Corner (Berlin). I don’t know if that’s any help, you might check it out anyway!

    Greetings!
    Volker

    • October 26, 2011 at 2:38 pm

      Thanks. But I just realized I can get it over at SAE. Already ordered! Thanks for the help though.

      – KK

  4. October 14, 2012 at 10:32 am

    glad you raised this issue, I fully agree

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