Light of the Seven

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"Light of the Seven"
Song by Ramin Djawadi
from the album Game of Thrones: Season 6 (soundtrack)
Released June 24, 2016
Recorded 2016
Genre Television soundtrack
Length 9:49
Label WaterTower Music
Songwriter(s) Ramin Djawadi
Producer(s) Ramin Djawadi

"Light of the Seven" is a piece in the HBO's series Game of Thrones, the television series adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin. It first played during the season six finale of the show and was composed by Ramin Djawadi in 2016. The "Light of the Seven" is the first time piano is used in the music for Game of Thrones.[1] It was nominated for International Film Music Critics Association for "Film Music Composition Of The Year".

Background[edit]

In an interview, Djawadi spoke about "Light of the Seven", which largely consisted of piano, something unusual for the series.[2] Djawadi stated, "The interesting thing to me was the use of the piano. When we started the season showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss, and Miguel Sapochnik, the director of the episode, reached out to me and said, "There's something coming up in episode 10." We talked about the "Light of the Seven", and how it needed to be a new piece of music. Any kind of character theme could tip it, and we didn't want to tip the audience. Miguel brought it up: "What about the piano?" We discussed it. The piano is not really in the language of the Game of Thrones score."[2]

He continued, "It all felt like a perfect fit. What's great about the scene, too, is there's hardly any dialogue. It's nine minutes long. I knew I had to start minimal and give it space. Let notes ring, then give it space, and build up the anticipation from there, without tipping in either direction."[2] Djawadi stated that he refrained from using the typical Lannister theme, "The Rains of Castamere", in order to create more of a mystery.[2] The piece also featured vocals by two young boys singing in unison, with Djawadi describing how he pieced all of the separate pieces of the music together by saying "The boys I recorded completely separate. The strings I recorded all together. Even the solo instruments, I recorded them separately — the solo violins and solo cellists were recorded separately. The piano, I played. And the organ as well."[2]

In another interview, Djawadi talked about the process, saying, "That was the big guidance for me, in how I wanted to build this piece, It's a different instrument, and I put it in an upper register, but the idea is that it's building something that stays the same but changes over time. Of course, now that I say that, people might be like, 'No, it's not really that.' And it's not staying true to the form. Obviously the picture is guiding me, so I have to pull back and break away from it. I couldn't keep it as a passacaglia all the way through. But there are definitely moments where it defaults to that."[3]

Composition[edit]

"Light of the Seven" has a duration of approximately ten minutes. When Djawadi originally composed the piece, he intended at first to make it a passacaglia.[3] The instrumentation of "Light of the Seven" consists of piano, organ, strings and two boy soloists.[3] On why he decided to use two young soloists instead of a full choir, Djawadi said, "I felt that two of them were more haunting than using a full choir, because it's a smaller environment, when they're running around in the catacombs."[3]

Credits and personnel[edit]

Personnel adapted from the album liner notes.[4]

Live performances[edit]

Djawadi performing "Light of the Seven" at the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience.

Djawadi has performed the piece with a live orchestra at the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience, which consisted of 24 dates in cities across the United States and Canada.[5]

Reception[edit]

The piece received universal praise from critics and fans, with Lili Loofbourow of The Week calling it the "real winner" of the season finale.[6] Djawadi responded to the universal praise the composition got, saying, "I never would have thought that would happen, It's so exciting because it's such a special finale."[3]

Aftermath[edit]

A remixed version of "Light of the Seven" was used in a season 7 trailer.[7] The final motif from this piece is used in the season 6 track "Hear Me Roar", and is also used from season 7 onwards in tracks involving Cersei Lannister and her machinations, such as "The Long Farewell" or "No One Walks Away From Me", acting as an alternate theme to "The Rains of Castamere" for her character.

Charts[edit]

The track reached No. 1 on Billboard's Spotify Viral 50 chart.[8]

Awards[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee(s) Result Ref.
2016 International Film Music Critics Association Film Music Composition Of The Year Ramin Djawadi Nominated [9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Renfro, Kim (July 7, 2016). "Meet the musical genius behind the 'Game of Thrones' soundtrack who watches each season before anyone else". techinsider. Retrieved July 22, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Wigler, Josh (June 28, 2016). "'Game of Thrones' Composer Discusses "Light of the Seven," the Finale's "Haunting" King's Landing Score". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on August 17, 2016. Retrieved June 30, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Vineyard, Jennifer (July 21, 2016). "'Game of Thrones' Composer Discusses "Light of the Seven," the Finale's "Haunting" King's Landing Score". Vulture. Archived from the original on October 17, 2016. Retrieved October 11, 2016. 
  4. ^ "Game of Thrones: Season 6 by Ramin Djawadi". Retrieved October 10, 2016. 
  5. ^ "Sights and sounds of the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience". Winteriscoming.net. February 21, 2017. Retrieved March 27, 2017. 
  6. ^ Loofbourow, Lily (June 29, 2016). "Why the real winner of the Game of Thrones season finale was the music". The Week. Archived from the original on August 17, 2016. Retrieved June 30, 2016. 
  7. ^ "Game of Thrones Season 7: #WinterIsHere Trailer #2 (HBO)". 
  8. ^ "Spotify Viral 50". Billboard. July 16, 2016. 
  9. ^ "IFMCA Award Nominations 2016 | IFMCA: International Film Music Critics Association". International Film Music Critics Association. Retrieved April 9, 2017.