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by Eric Whitacre

Why this piece was written . . .

Godzilla Eats Las Vegas


Whitacre
Entertainment Piece
The performers are encouraged to go

crazy: wear showgirl costumes, Elvis


costumes, act out scenes on stage, use
video and lighting anything to get a
laugh. Whitacre

Godzilla Eats Las Vegas


Whitacre
1. The Script
2. Musical Elements
3. The main idea/heart of this piece.
4. Concepts

1. Story Line
Part 1:
FADE UP
It is a Bright and Sunny day as the sequined curtain rises
on tinsel town, and the excitement of a new day filled with
the possibility of The Big Payoff is practically palpable. The
band kicks off the show in high gear and all is well as we
suddenly hear:
CUT TO DESERT
A lone shakuhachi flute usher the arrival of something
really VERY bad.
CUT BACK TO BAND
A relaxed rumba. showgirls blissfully jiggle.
CUT TO MILITARY COMMAND CENTER (stock footage)
Morse code signals the confirmation of approaching doom.

CUT BACK TO BAND


The players finish off their third set and head for the
bar; outside we hear:
SLOW ZOOM
Oh no, oh no, oh no, its:
CLOSE UP
Godzilla! Glorious Godzilla!
VARIOUS QUICK CUTS (stock footage)
Godzilla destroys cars, screaming tourists, etc.
CUT BACK TO BAND
The band, quasi Greek Chorus, calls for Godzilla to
Mambo.
GODZILLA, FULL FRAME
Godzilla mambos, casually crushing hysterical Vegans
without missing a step.
EXTREME CLOSE UP
A tiny terrier barking bravely, then:

CUT BACK TO GODZILLA


Demolishing everything in his path not even
the doggie escapes!
WIDE PAN
As Godzilla heads down the strip, searching
relentlessly for:
CLOSE UP (stock footage)
Frank Sinatra (Stomped!)
CLOSE UP (stock footage)
Wayne Newton (Stamped!)
CLOSE UP (stock footage)
Liberace (Stepped upon!)
VARIOUS CUTS
The Village Gods destroyed, Godzilla continues
his carnage until the city of Sin is leveled.

Part 2
FADE UP
A fearless army of Elvises (Elvi) appear in the distance,
formation marching through the littered streets
VARIOUS CLOSE UPS
The Elvi attack, using bombers, missiles, ect.
EXTREME CLOSE UP
One wicked laugh from Godzilla and the Elvi scatter like
mice!
QUICK CUT (stock footage)
The Sphinx sits outside The Luxor, looking seductive in a Mae
West sort of way.
CLOSE UP
Godzilla takes one look and his eyes pop out of his head.
QUICK CUTS
The Sphinx (Sphinxtress?) seduces the Reptile, who instantly
falls in love and begins to
WIDE SHOT
tango with her.

SPLIT SCREEN
As they dance, the Elvi slowly regroup and head for
the:
QUICK CUT (stock footage)
Pirate ships at Treasure Island
ACTION SEQUENCE (MONTAGE)
The Elvi approach the dancing monster and launch a
ferocious volley of cannonballs directly at him.
QUICK CLOSE UPS
The cannonballs find their mark, and Godzilla:
WIDE SHOT
Falls to the ground, annihilated. The Elvi are
triumphant!
CROSSFADE
The lounge is open again, and the city of Las Vegas
toasts the victory. The scene climaxes with:

VARIOUS CUTS (stock footage)


People happy, tearful, ect. Stock footage,
stock music.
SLOW FADE OUT AND FADE UP
A dark, ominous, and very familiar sound
SLOW ZOOM
Godzilla lives! Godzilla lives! Complete terror
(possible sequel?).
WIDE SHOT
The Show is over. The End.
FADE TO BLACK

2. Musical Elements
Form: AB
There is a Part 1 and a Part 2.

Tempo/Styles within:
There are over 30 different tempos within the piece. Ranging
from Mambo Furioso, Bright and Flashy, Tempo Tragic, Big
Vegas Swing, Cocktail Jazz, Pesante, Allegrando, legato, Free
and Rubato, Lisstesso, Broadly, Expressivo, Easy Swing, etc.

Rhythm: Different rhythms within different

styles.
Some tempos are at quarter note = 60 and others are at
quarter note = 120. Thus, the rhythms reflect the tempo
styles and range from easy half notes/quarter notes to
difficult fast past dotted sixteenths/triplets swung in a jazz
style.

Harmony:
Whitacre employs his Whitachords here. These are chords
with pan-diatonic clusters arranged in increasing to
decreasing densities.

Instrumentation
Calls for : Flutes, Oboes, Bassoon, Bb Clarinet, Bass Clarinet,
Alto Sax, Tenor Sax, Bari Sax, Bb Trumpet, Horn in F,
Trombone, Bass Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba, Piano, Mallet
Percussion, Timpani, and 4 Percussionist parts.
*Note: The percussionist parts are complex. They need: Bass
drums, bells, bongos, chimes, claves, concert tom (1),
cowbell, cymbals (crash, splash, and suspended), flexatone,
glass/garbage cans, gong, lions roar, marching machine,
marching whistle, mark tree, ratchet, snare, tambourine,
tam-tam, timbales, triangle, vibraphone, and a xylophone,.

Melody/Texture
Different melodies are shown within each different tempo. The
melodies are prominently played by a singular instrument
group (i.e. just the clarinets or just the saxophones) and
then the rest of the band accompanies them. *Each
instrument does play a melody line at some point.

Additional Music Considerations:


There is singing and screaming within the piece (kids must
perform this in the correct rhythms). The piece is based
upon an entertainment score given to the audience; thus,
the band must showcase this by showing different
styles/rhythms/tempo markings.

3. Main idea/Heart of the work


Entertainment
Ensemble
Audience

4. Concepts
1. Recognize different styles of music.
2. Recognize the types of tempos/rhythms

within those styles of music.


3. Percussion section.
4. Students can recognize what a 20 th style
composition sounds like.

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