Sir Anthony Hopkins releasing his first ever album ‘Composer’

by Lisa McGarry

Sir Anthony Hopkins, one of the world’s greatest living screen actors, is releasing the first ever album of his original classical music compositions through Classic FM. ‘Anthony Hopkins – Composer’ will be available from 16th January 2012 through Amazon, HMV, and iTunes.

It all began when Sir Anthony Hopkins was just six, his enduring love of the piano ignited by lessons from Mrs Jeffreys in the house where he was born in Margam, a suburb of Port Talbot in Wales. His mother had great hopes that one day her son would become a famous pianist. Her child showed great promise, improvising with chords and melody from an early age, scribbling down thoughts on sixpenny sheets of manuscript paper from Mister Salter’s music shop in Neath but it is only now, after decades of playing and composing works of music, that a collection of her son’s original works is to be released on record for the first time.

In July this year, Sir Anthony joined the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra on stage at Birmingham Symphony Hall to introduce a performance of his original compositions and scores from some of his best-known films. ‘Anthony Hopkins – Composer’ is the recording of nine of Sir Anthony’s original works from that evening including pieces composed for two films that he not only scored but also directed and starred in (‘Slipstream’ and ‘August’).

Sir Anthony’s love of the piano and fascination with orchestration has not waned during his exceptional career of Oscar-winning celluloid performances. From discovering the chapter on orchestration in a volume of his father’s Harmsworth’s Self-Educators encyclopaedias as a child, he has drawn inspiration from people, places, memories and moments in life to create beautiful, nuanced works of music that showcase his flair as a virtuoso musician and his vision as a talented composer.

The scraps of melody and sounds that were first jotted down in childhood have evolved over the years into pieces inspired by childhood memories of Wales, time spent with his parents and grandparents, plays he has seen, films he has worked on, holidays taken, dreams he has dreamt and loved ones including an enchanting aria dedicated to his wife Stella. All these inspirations and more are represented in Sir Anthony’s classical music compositions.

Sir Anthony Hopkins says: “I’m very pleased I’ve found an extra string to my fiddle. For years I mused and dreamt about turning my scribbled thoughts and bursts of melody into pieces of work to be performed by a full orchestra and to see this dream turn into a reality through working with CBSO and now Classic FM is something I treasure very much.”
As a child, Sir Anthony dreamt of “one day, perhaps, one day” becoming a composer. With the release of ‘Anthony Hopkins – Composer’, both his and his mother’s dream is now cemented for all to enjoy.

Stella – From the score for the film ‘Slipstream’
Evesham Fair
And The Waltz Goes On – Composed by Sir Anthony Hopkins; Arranged by: André Léon Marie Nicolas Rieu;
Margam – From the score for the film ‘August’
1947 1st Movement – Circus
1947 2nd Movement – Bracken Road
1947 3rd Movement – The Plaza – From the score for the film ‘Slipstream’