Film Music Beyond Hollywood (W3039)

15 credits, Level 5

Spring teaching

On this module you’ll explore some of the exciting and experimental developments in film music practices emerging in the second half of the twentieth century. During this time cultural changes and expectations were reflected in greater experimentalism and innovation across society and art forms. This includes film music and sound, following the so-called 'Golden Age' of classical Hollywood film scores in the 1920s, 30s and 40s.

You’ll begin with a brief review of 'Golden Age' film music and the established continuity system of musical editing. You will then examine case studies of film scores from several different countries, including USA, Britain, France, and the former Soviet Union. You’ll consider fragmented, composite, formalist and popular music solutions.

Finally you’ll consider the growing influence of sound design and the blurred boundaries between music and sound in some contemporary cinema.


50%: Lecture
50%: Seminar


100%: Coursework (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 24 hours of contact time and about 126 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2023/24. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: