Premiered by ABC on September 23rd 1979, S.O.S Titanic ran for three hours and was the costliest television film ever made. The film featured a huge star cast including David Janssen, Helen Mirren, Ian Holm, David Warner, Harry Andrews and Cloris Leachman and the script was brilliantly-researched by James Costigan and based on a first-hand account by passenger-survivor Lawrence Beesley.
On 18th March Silva Screen will premiere the original TV soundtrack to this arguably most intelligent and authentic version of the Titanic tragedy. The album includes Howard Blake’s lush symphonic score and a tapestry of historically-correct music that was played on the ship in the last hours. An innovation in the story-telling portrayed the differences between 1st, 2nd and 3rd class passengers and this was also to be reflected in the music – with, for instance, Irish music from the 3rd, songs with piano from the 2nd and a sophisticated orchestra in the 1st.
Perhaps best known for his timeless TV score for the animated Channel 4 TV film ‘The Snowman’ (1982), Howard Blake’s career brought about a number of film scores including The Duellists and A Month in the Country, both of which won prizes. He has also written a number of concert works and as Princess Diana’s favorite composer Blake was commissioned to write a piano concerto for her 30th Birthday. His achievements were recognised in 1994 when he received the O.B.E. for services to music.