Fun Nutcracker Project Help


Member: Rank 3
I'm not entirely sure if this is the right area of the forum to post this, so I've made a good educated guess, and if it turns out I guessed wrong, hopefully the mods here will help to move it into the right section (or remove it entirely, if there is no proper place for it). Thanks to everyone for their cooperation
Okay, a little background is needed for this, so bear with me. Probably a long read ahead.

I remember it like it was yesterday. It was back in 2002, when I was only five years old. It was late at night, and I was sitting in the big recliner, looking at the pictures in a big book that was filled with Christmas stories. It was from this very book that first heard the stories of "Scrooge," "The Shoemaker and the Elves," and many other stories.

Ah, if only I could go back to the good old days, back when I was more innocent, and when Christmas felt so magical. Things lose a lot of their charm when you grow up, and I wish it didn't have to be that way. I love Christmas. Always have. But it was those good old days when I didn't see the bad side of snowstorms and icy roads, back when I loved to go outside and play in the snow everyday, back when I was obsessed with toys and games, that Christmas felt so much more magical. If I could change one thing about my life, it would be to bring back the charm of a happy childhood.

It was on one of these days, very close to Christmas, that my Mom decided to stay up for a few hours and read some stories to me out of the book. I remember stories like, "The First Christmas Tree Lights," "The Story of Silent Night," "The Christmas Miracle," and "The Story of the Christmas Spiders." But the story I have the fondest memories of, the one that I first heard on that wonderful December night, was "The Nutcracker" by ETA Hoffmann.

The story was an abridged version of the original novella, but it was a faithful version, and I absolutely loved it. Still do, in fact. It is one of my all time favorite Christmas stories, and Marie Stahlbaum is one of my favorite literary females. It was such a magical story about dreams becoming real, and looking beyond the outward appearance of a person. I've always wished that I could go on an adventure to Marzipan Castle on Christmas Eve night, just like Marie did, and I just have never forgotten about this story.

Now, although I was initially disappointed with the ballet when I finally saw it a few years later (it doesn't have the same message or magical feel of the book), it has grown on me since then, and I do enjoy watching it every year. I especially enjoy the score. I'd go so far as to say that the score is the best thing about it. It captures the fell of the story, and I just can't get enough of it. I find myself listening to it year-round, and it defines Christmas music for me. Christmas would not be the same without it.

I was thinking a few weeks ago that it would be fun for me to do a reading of the book that I will upload to YouTube for other people to listen to. In my opinion, the book is criminally underrated, and I thought that putting up a reading of it on YouTube might draw more attention to it.

However, I also thought it would be fun to insert music from the ballet's score during my reading of it, in order to spice it up a bit, to make more than a generic reading of the book. Now, the events of the book are very different from the ballet, so the music won't match each scene one hundred percent. However, I still want to somehow manage to use the entire score, and place the music during scenes of the book that I think they fit best. I'm also fine with having tracks play more than once throughout the reading.

My problem is that, even though the music is in the public domain, recording audio did not exist back when the music was written, and so it's very hard to find recordings of the music that are in the public domain. I am pushing forward with finding public domain recordings of every track, refusing to give up, because I'm sure that out out of the thousand-something people that record the score, there's got to be a few people that have made a recording specifically for the purpose of releasing it for people to use for free with no restrictions. So, my search continues after a few weeks.

I have managed to find a website that had a public domain recording of the suite. However, there are a few problems with the tracks on there. First of all, whoever posted those tracks added some fade outs to the end of each of them, which ruins them, because the endings of them sound way better without them, and the fade outs make them jarring. I have managed to reduce the fade outs as much as possible with Audacity (as well as speeding up the tempo for the Arabian Dance, which went deathly slow in the track I downloaded) so that they are barely noticeable now, but they still feel a bit jarring. Also, I don't just want the suite, I want the full score. To indirectly quote an article I read once, going back to the suite after hearing the full score so many times is like going back to pan-and-scan versions of movies. So, I need help finding public domain recordings of the score. I was hoping some people could aid me in the search, so that I can have my audio reading done and uploaded by this upcoming Christmas.

Here are some details:

-Everyone is welcome to help me with this.

-I have managed to find a public domain text of the original book on Project Gutenberg, so don't worry about finding that for me.

-You are welcome to attempt to try and make your own recording of the score and send it to me. I will credit you for it.

-I do not intend to find the track from Tchaicovsky's Sleeping Beauty that is used in some performances of The Nutcracker. However, if someone does find a public domain recording it, I might use it in my audio reading.

-Don't worry about my preferences for the tempo in a musical track. If the track is in the public domain, I will change the tempo to my preferred speed using Audacity.

-If anyone has any other suggestions for my audio reading, feel free to post them here. I am always interested in new ideas.

High Plains Drifter

The Drifter
Can you look up old records of this? If so see if you can buy a record player that plugs into your computer. This way you avoid using web sites and what other have done to the music. If you can maybe see if there are groups on sites like facebook that might have the original music as downloads to their members. I know this is a long shot, but just trying to think how I would go about it.


Member: Rank 3
:emoji_alien: Did you manage to complete this project, Film Fan?
I forgot I made this post, but, funnily enough, I actually finally did complete it last year.

To be honest, I think it's kind of a half-hearted attempt, and I don't really think that one hour and twenty minutes of music can properly be stretched over two hours and fifteen minutes of material, especially when the actual ballet deviates so heavily from the book in the second act (or, to be more precise, just forgets about telling any kind of story at all once it hits the second act), meaning that I'm trying to cram music that isn't remotely related to what I'm reading about into most of the book. Also, ironically, the recording I'm using actually finally got an official re-release a few months after I put this together. My reason for using this specific recording is because of the unlikelihood of active copyright enforcement, and the point is moot now. So I likely might quietly take down the video in the future and just leave up my vanilla reading of the book (which actually got far more views anyway). I can call this is a learning experience at most, now equipped with the knowledge that this project was probably never going to work out. Honestly, I think the music is kind of distracting over my reading of it anyway.