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'Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage' Celebrates 50 Years of Music in the Final Frontier

For the past half century, Star Trek has grown from one short lived TV series created by Gene Roddenberry into a franchise that now includes 5 additional television series and 12 movies with plenty more likely to come.

Part of the appeal of the original series was its distinctive theme that swelled underneath William Shatner’s now classic voiceover:

However, this iconic opening is not the only music composed for Star Trek. This Sunday evening at the Riverside Theater you can hear 50 years’ worth of Trek music composed by people ranging from Jerry Goldsmith to Dianne Warren to James Horner.

Justin Freer produces and conducts the 2 hour cineconcert "Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage," which incorporates film clips with music being performed by an on stage orchestra.

"The art of film music, the art of television music remain as two of perhaps the most important art forms in music history - right there with ballet and opera and all these symphonic experiences we've had over the decades, over the centuries," says Freer.

In order to put together such an endeavor of film and music history, Freer explains that the process was reversed from the typical film score method. The music compilation was first selected by Freer and other producers from hundreds of hours of scores, then the film and television clips that best went along with the music were incorporated.

"This marriage of music and film is such a magical experience when it works well," explains Freer. "You almost can't explain why it works when it's almost a minor miracle to begin with."

Even if you are not a "trekkie," there is still something for everyone to enjoy in a cineconcert according to Freer.

"The ability to sit and listen to, sit and watch, sit and feel physically the sounds coming from the orchestra...contribute to a storytelling experience," he says. "It's what people are attracted to in film and television."

"I hope that it energizes people to pay not only more attention to film music, but to music in general and what it does for us in our everyday lives."


Audrey Nowakowski hosts and produces Lake Effect. She joined WUWM in 2014.