Joseph Vitarelli scores HBO’s John Adams miniseries

Posted on February 22, 2008 by Dan Goldwasser

Recently, Emmy-nominated composer Joseph Vitarelli has been recording his score for the epic 7-part HBO miniseries John Adams. Directed by Tom Hooper (Elizabeth I) and written by Kirk Ellis (Into the West) based on the best-selling book by David McCullough, John Adams stars Paul Giamatti in the title role, with Laura Linney as Abigail Adams, and David Morse as George Washington. The miniseries is executive produced by Tom Hanks, Gary Goetzman and Frank Doelger.

Joseph Vitarelli at the John Adams scoring session

George Del Barrio conducts the Hollywood Studio Symphony

The music for the miniseries is actually by Vitarelli and composer Rob Lane, with the 8.5-hour long miniseries split in half between the two composers. Lane has been recording his music in London, and Vitarelli has been recording in Los Angeles. Most recently, he scored the sixth episode at the Sony Scoring Stage in Culver City, CA.

The Hollywood Studio Symphony performs on John Adams

Joseph Vitarelli gives feedback to the orchestra

Concertmaster Endra Granat leads the orchestra

Copyist Ken Gruberman and conductor George Del Barrio

Delicate and tragic at times, the lush and emotional music was conducted by George Del Barrio who conducted the Hollywood Studio Symphony without click – only streamers to guide the timings, courtesy of Auricle operator Richard Grant.

French horns on John Adams

In the control room, Vitarelli was assisted by Nick Viterelli, music consultant Evyen Klean, score producer Brad Ellis and music copyist Ken Gruberman. ProTools operator Vinnie Cirilli recorded the score digitally, while scoring mixer Bobby Fernandez mixed the orchestra live.

Nick Viterelli, Ken Gruberman and Joseph Vitarelli

Auricle operator Richard Grant and ProTools recordist Vinnie Cirilli

Scoring mixer Bobby Fernandez and Evyen Klean

John Adams will run from March 16 through April 27, 2008 on HBO.

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