Duel of the Fates
Note: This video was filmed before the COVID-19 restrictions and was directed by Devin Graham, award-winning filmmaker and YouTube influencer.
“Duel of the Fates”
This musical theme was written for choir and orchestra by legendary composer John Williams and made its debut during the final lightsaber battle in the film Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. The words are a fragment of an ancient Welsh poem that Williams had translated into Sanskrit. He then rearranged the syllables himself to make the text essentially meaningless, while still retaining a forceful chant-like power. He intended the choral singing itself to give the scene an explicitly religious feel, as if it were a ceremony of some kind. “Duel of the Fates” went on to become a defining musical feature of the prequel trilogy, a symbol of the saga’s broad focus on the cosmic struggle between darkness and light.
John Williams: Composer of “Duel of the Fates”
John Williams has composed some of the most iconic movie themes and scores including Star Wars, Jaws, Superman, E.T. the Extra Terrestrial, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Home Alone, Jurassic Park, and Harry Potter to name a handful. Steven Spielberg, director and producer of many of the films composed by Williams, once said, “Without John Williams, bikes don’t fly and neither do brooms in Quidditch matches nor do men in red capes. There is no Force, dinosaurs do not walk the earth. We do not wonder, we do not weep, we do not believe.”
Williams also composed “Call of the Champions,” the theme for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, which featured The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square. Throughout the years the Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square have performed and recorded many selections by Williams including “Somewhere in My Memory,” from Home Alone; “America, the Dream Goes On;” and “Hymn to the Fallen,” from Saving Private Ryan.