Music of The Hobbit film series

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"The Hobbit soundtrack" redirects here. For the soundtrack of the 2003 video game, see The Hobbit (2003 video game).

The music of The Hobbit film series is composed and produced by Howard Shore, who scored all three The Lord of the Rings films. The music for An Unexpected Journey was performed and recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra as it was for The Lord of the Rings. However, the music for The Desolation of Smaug and The Battle of the Five Armies was performed and recorded by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

The soundtrack album for An Unexpected Journey received nominations for various awards and peaked in the top ten album charts in multiple countries.

Principal leitmotifs[edit]

First appearance in An Unexpected Journey[edit]

  • Bilbo's theme: A variation on the 'Shire theme'; a harmonious motif to represent Bilbo Baggins, the main protagonist.
  • Erebor theme: A rising motif using three-horn calls that represents the homeland of the Dwarves.
  • Arkenstone theme: A choral motif that accompanies the Arkenstone, the most valuable jewel in the Dwarves' possession.
  • The Woodland Realm theme: a choral motif which accompanies Thranduil and the elves as they greet Thror during the prologue.
  • Thorin's theme: A hopeful motif representing Thorin Oakenshield, first appearing when Thorin tries to defend Erebor's gate from the dragon Smaug, during the prologue.
  • Smaug's theme: A menacing and discordant theme representing Smaug the Terrible.
  • Gandalf's theme: A five-note motif that represents Gandalf the Grey; this theme is different than that of Gandalf the White's theme, from The Lord of the Rings trilogy.
  • Bilbo's Antics: Appears as Bilbo struggles with the Dwarves' lifestyle and lives out of his comfort zone; represents his "Tookish" side.
  • Misty Mountains theme: Represents the Dwarven Company, their Quest to reclaim Erebor, and their crossing of the iconic Misty Mountains. It is also the basis for the "Song of the Lonely Mountain" by Neil Finn. However, it is curiously absent from The Desolation of Smaug and The Battle of the Five Armies.
  • Radagast theme: A quirky theme for Radagast the Brown, representing his perpetual motion.
  • Dol Guldur/The Necromancer: aggressive and sombre theme that represents the dark fortress of Dol Guldur and the Necromancer within.
  • Azog's theme: Variation on the 'Descending Third motif' of Mordor, here representing the film's main antagonist Azog the Defiler.
  • Moon theme: A motif that represents the Dwarves' moon runes, and their secret doors.
  • Goblin-town theme: A chaotic and brassy theme which appears when the Dwarves get captured by the Goblins.
  • Bilbo's Heroics: Appears at the end of the film when Bilbo saves Thorin's life.
  • Warg Scouts' Theme: A 13 note motif that appears in the songs "Warg Scouts" and "Out of the Frying Pan". In The Battle of the Five Armies soundtrack, it is played on the song "Ravenhill."

First appearance in The Desolation of Smaug[edit]

  • Beorn's theme: A deep and brassy theme played several times in the opening tracks.
  • Mirkwood theme: The theme is built around slow succession. Different variations are played when the Company wanders in the forest.
  • Thranduil's theme: Wholly majestic theme orchestrated with beautiful strings and ethereal voices, often representing Thranduil.
  • Legolas's theme: A fast-paced, dance-like theme based on the first line of The Woodland Realm theme but differentiating in tempo.
  • Tauriel's theme: A powerful and melodic string rhythm appears as a theme several times. Later on, the theme is varied based on the scenario.
  • Bard's theme: The theme reflects his ambiguity as a character.
  • The Heirs of Durin: A theme that represents Thorin, Kili, and Fili. The theme starts similarly to Thorin's Theme, but plays out differently. It is featured in the tracks "Durin's Folk" and "My Armor is Iron". In The Battle of the Five Armies soundtrack, it is played in "Beyond Sorrow and Grief" and "Mithril" and is featured prominently at the beginning of "Sons of Durin."
  • Kili's Theme: A short theme that is played on a trumpet. It appears at the beginning of "Feast of Starlight." In The Battle of the Five Armies soundtrack, it is played at the beginning of "Shores of the Long Lake" and is played near the end of "Ravenhill."
  • Tauriel and Kili: A love theme that represents the relationship between the two characters. It appears in "Feast of Starlight", "Kingsfoil", and "Beyond the Forest".
  • Bolg's Theme: A loud and ominous theme that appears at the end of the extended version of "The Forest River" and appears in "The Hunters." It is very similar to Azog's Theme.
  • Smaug's Cunning: A motif that appears throughout almost the entire soundtrack. It is loudly heard in "A Liar and a Thief" and "Smaug". In the films its played almost every time a reference to Smaug is mentioned. On The Battle of the Five Armies soundtrack, it is used as a motif to represent Thorin's Dragon Sickness.
  • Esgaroth Theme: A 10-note theme that represents Lake-Town. It appears prominently in the tracks "Protector of the Common Folk" and "Thrice Welcome".
  • The Master of Lake-Town's Theme: The theme, played by woodwinds, strings and a clavichord, reflects his high position and his greedy nature.
  • Alfrid's Theme: A short motif that represents The Master of Lake-Town's slimy assistant, Alfrid. It appears briefly in "Protector of the Common Folk" and it appears in the film version of "The Battle of the Five Armies."
  • Girion's Theme: A motif to represent the Last Lord of Dale who injured Smaug, who is also Bard's ancestor
  • Bilbo's Schemes: A short motif to represent Bilbo's role as a burglar. It is played during "Barrels Out of Bond". In The Battle of the Five Armies soundtrack, is played during "A Thief in the Night" and "There And Back Again".

First appearance in The Battle of the Five Armies[edit]

  • Dain II "Ironfoot"'s theme: A heroic theme played by woodwinds, trumpets, and bagpipes. It appears in "Ironfoot" and "Battle for the Mountain", and it is played in the movie during Dain's arrival to the Lonely Mountain and the beginning of the battle.
  • Bard's family's theme: A gently rising a falling theme which, after being hinted at in the second movie, is first played in full during "Fire and Water". A heroic rendition of the theme appears during the end of "Battle for the Mountain". It also appears in the extended version of "Ironfoot".
  • Gundabad theme: A driving, offbeat theme for Mount Gundabad and its forces. It is first played out in "Bred for War", and features prominently at times in "Ravenhill".
  • The Army of Thorin: A harsh motif that is played with drums and horns in the tracks "The Ruins of Dale" and "Mithril", representing the militarization of Thorin's company.
  • Bard's Leadership Theme: A short motif that appears in "Shores of the Long Lakes", "Ironfoot", and "Dragon-Sickness". In the film, it is played when Percy recounts Bard's shooting the dragon.

Soloists[edit]

As with Lord of the Rings, many soloists performed music for the three films. These include Neil Finn who performed the "Song of the Lonely Mountain" in An Unexpected Journey[1][2] and Richard Armitage as a cast performer. James Nesbitt also performs in the extended edition of An Unexpected Journey.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Neil Finn Reaches Epic Heights on 'Song of the Lonely Mountain' – Song Premiere". Rolling Stone. 12 November 2012. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  2. ^ "Neil Finn's song for The Hobbit". Stuff.co.nz. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 

External links[edit]