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On-line version ISSN 2617-3255
Print version ISSN 1021-1497


NGUBANE, Ntombi. Killmonger: scoring modes and representation in Black Panther. IT [online]. 2022, n.36, pp.1-14. ISSN 2617-3255.

Anticipated by many, and equally a site of contention or reverence, Black Panther and its accompanying original musical score as composed by Ludwig Gõrranson is rife for analysis and brings to fore the question: in what ways is a Hollywood practice used in a film with seemingly other aesthetic aims? A score which features few disparate and disconnected vague references to an "African sound" for the imagined country of Wakanda is undercut even more so by the insistent use of an otherwise purely western orchestral score. Firstly, through a brief overview of Goransson's production approaches to the score for Black Panther, and his collaboration with local experts, this article argues for a more nuanced understanding of authorship arising from such collaborations between these expert improvising music and film composers who tend to be the sole credited composers. Furthermore, musical representations are complicated by the recurring theme of the "other" according to Classical Hollywood tropes through the integration of occasional African instruments. In section two, brief transcriptions of the music composed for the character Killmonger are provided, in the search for representation devices - how the music works to or fails to establish the character. Also provided are the authors' personal insights as to whether or not Gõransson's intentions with the music are in fact evident in the film.

Keywords : Afrofuturism; music in film; film music; representation; African music in film; film scoring; Black Panther; film scoring practice; orchestration; leitmotif; musical representation.

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