LOTR full score/parts

Edited: August 23, 2021, 10:34 AM · Hi all

I have been on a little Google quest lately in search of the full score, or better, the 1st/2nd violin parts from it, from Lord of the Rings by Howard Shore. I thought this wouldn't be a problem, but it seems harder than I thought.

All I find are special arrangements, transcriptions and adaptions. Obviously parts are available since orchestras play the pieces, but where? Could it be that the full performance version is not available for the general public? I have literally no experience of buying orchestral music, so please be kind in your responses:)

Replies (12)

Edited: August 23, 2021, 11:20 AM · Orchestral parts for recent works are usually for rental only. And very expensive.
August 23, 2021, 12:32 PM · That explains it. Thanks.
August 23, 2021, 8:46 PM · Howard Shore is published by Schott. The full score and parts appear to be available here, at least for a couple (and one currently out of stock):


You could write to Schott to enquire further.

Since there are three films, I don't know which you are after.

August 24, 2021, 4:15 AM · hi Andrew: what you refer to are arrangements, like Jens writes,. those can be found easily, what Jens is after is the actual, full, movie score. but anyway, like Andrew writes, for that you'd have to contact Howard Shore's agent or publisher directly, but the price will only be feasible for professional orchestras with a large audience. https://www.howardshore.com/contact/

Jens probably the only chance if you or someone you know well, actually personally knows a violinist who actually played in one of those popular concerts where the full movie and score are performed. then you may get a hold of a copy of the part. the old-fashioned I-know-someone system :-)

Edited: August 24, 2021, 1:26 PM · This is the work you're referring to?


Schott Music

Norman D. Ryan
Vice President – Composers & Repertoire
Schott Music NY
254 West 31st Street, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10001

telephone: (212) 461-6940

For rental inquiries and quotes please contact:

Doriana Molla
Head of Rental Services
Schott Music Corporation (New York)
Telephone: (212) 461-6946

Edited: August 24, 2021, 6:15 PM · Full film scores can be expensive while the film is still under copyright.

A few years ago, my orchestra planned to screen a movie while playing the soundtrack, and ended up canceling it because the score and parts rental fee alone would have exceeded the revenue from a sold-out hall.

August 24, 2021, 9:46 PM · 100% concur that it will only be available through rental and it will be very very very expensive.
Edited: August 25, 2021, 5:11 PM · So it seems something like this is the closest you get without paying a fortune.


I'm just curious what "arranged by" really means in this case. I doubt the guy has written down the music from listening to performances. And if he more or less copied chunks from the original score, would that be under a separate kind of copyright then?

Andrew: I was interested in the violin 1/2 part for all three films, but that will probably not happen right now since I don't know anybody who can help me "the old fashioned way".

Gene: The "symphony" is a separate work based on the movie score. It would also be very nice to have, but it is probably as difficult/expensive to get as the full score.

August 25, 2021, 7:09 PM · Student arrangements of film scores are quite common. This means that the publisher has obtained rights to do an arrangement from Howard Shores / the movie rightsholders. Then an arranger takes the orchestral score and writes a simplified student work from it.

The full score of those movies are sometimes done as "in the park" sorts of performances, I think, when they show the movie and perform the score live. They're not normally performed in concert.

However, it is pretty common for orchestras to perform the suite from the trilogy on pops concerts. A community orchestra of mine did it more than 15 years ago. Fun as a whole, but the string parts are definitely not exciting. Why do you want them?

September 13, 2021, 12:05 AM · Well, I am interested in movie scores/composing in general and thought it would be nice to see both the whole score and how the string parts are fitted in the orchestration, but playing-wise it's probably more interesting if you are in another instrument group as you say.
Edited: September 13, 2021, 6:55 AM · This thread is making me wonder how my hammered dulcimer teacher arranged for the score and the ability to play/post Hedwig's Theme on YouTube. It brings out the haunting nature of the HD. I'm not going to ask him how he got permission to arrange this. I haven't really thought about the costs of using modern scores before this thread.


I can certainly see the attraction for the OP.

September 13, 2021, 10:45 AM · On YouTube, automatic detection means that the copyright claimholder gets to claim ad revenue on that video.

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