THEME, in the
category of the
same name, is heard tentatively as Frodo and Sam's set out
from the Shire. It develops gradually into it's
full heroic version at the Council of Elrond. After
Gandalf's fall in Moria, it begins degrading and is
rarely heard in its full heroic manner
again until those of the Fellowship left rush the Black Gate "For Frodo".
It is referred to simply as the Fellowship Theme on this
HS COMMENT (FOTR Appendices)
HS COMMENT (HS Interview 11-20-01)
Historically, this theme has also been called The Fellowship of the
A short but significant similarity can be heard
between a piece of the Fellowship Theme and a phrase in Sibelius'
HERE to read more.
this theme is heard in FOTR:
A quiet version as Bilbo starts writing his book, “There and
Back Again”. It immediately follows the Shire theme
Frodo encourages a reluctant Sam to leave the Shire. “You
know what Bilbo used to say, ‘It’s a dangerous business, Frodo.
Going out your door.’”
An urgent version as
Gandalf rides to Isengard to research the Ring.
An ‘arduous’ version as Strider sets out from Bree with the
A quick phrase in the Midgewater Marshes (FOTR EE)
The Fellowship theme is mixed with the Ringwraiths' Theme
when Aragorn fights the Ringwraiths on Weathertop.
As Gandalf, Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli each
pledge themselves to Frodo on his quest (interesting side
note: The Shire Theme plays as the Hobbits insist on joining.
Boromir’s reluctant joining in the Fellowship is not accompanied
As soon as the Hobbits join (to the
Shire Theme) and the
Fellowship is complete, the music switches a ‘fully formed
version’ of the Fellowship theme
As the Fellowship prepares to leave Rivendell, Elrond gives
his blessing. (FOTR EE)
The well known scene of
walking up over a pass
(after leaving Rivendell and traveling through numerous
Another full version of the Fellowship theme as they
run from Balin’s tomb and make for the Bridge of Khazad-dûm.
After Aragorn and Frodo successfully make it over the gap in
the stairs. ‘the very last time you hear that very heroic
version of the theme because it’s the most glorious moment,
really, for the Fellowship.’
A soft, melancholy version as the Fellowship paddles away
from Lórien. (FOTR EE)
A ‘mournful version’ as the Fellowship moves
down the Anduin.
A measure is played as Aragorn draws Frodo’s attention to the
A ‘funereal, processional version’ immediately after
A tentative, resurrected version of the heroic version as the
Three Hunters decide to follow Merry and Pippin.
Places this theme is
heard in TTT:
The opening notes of the theme are heard as
each of the Three Hunters, Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas, are
introduced into TTT. Then it moves into the full version
as they begin
running after the Uruk-hai and Merry and Pippin. It gives way to a melody played on the oboe as Aragorn discovers
Pippin's brooch, then moves back into the Fellowship Theme as
begin running again.
A quick phrase of the Fellowship Theme is
overlaid on the 5/4 beat of the Isengard Theme and then it
blends into the Isengard melody as the Uruks and the Three
Hunters continue their running.
As Legolas says (while running after
the Uruks), "They run as if the very
whips of their masters were behind them."
A slow, sad phrase is played as Éomer says,
"We piled the carcasses and burned them."
Another slow version on horn as the Three
Hunters, joined by Gandalf, ride to the
top of a rise in Rohan. (At the top of the rise, they will spot Edoras and we'll hear the
When Théoden says, at the scene of the Warg
battle, "Leave the dead."
When Gimli greets the 'returned from the
dead' Aragorn at Helm's Deep.
Legolas apologies to Aragorn. "I
was wrong to despair." All these versions are slow, unlike
the earlier bombastic version while they were running.
A bright version is played as Aragorn hugs
Haldir who has brought the Elves to Helm's Deep.
Back to a bombastic version as Legolas surfs
down stairs in Helm's Deep and wrecks Elven havoc on the Uruks. Aragorn pulls Gimli out of a puddle and the battle continues.
An opening phrase plays as Gimli is tossed
the distance into the Uruks on the causeway. Then a high
note as Aragorn jumps. Then the theme as they fight the hordes.
A solemn, heroic version is heard as
at the top of the rise outside of Helm's Deep finds Théoden
fighting overwhelming odds. But neither Théoden or Gandalf
are alone. Éomer has come.
As Legolas smugly boasts to Gimli, post
battle, "Final count: 42". (EE version only)
The Battle for Helm's Deep is over.
"All our hopes lie with two little Hobbits.", Gandalf says. And the Fellowship Theme is heard for the last time in TTT.
Places this theme is
The up-down-up first three notes of
the Fellowship Theme are heard as we see Gandalf, Aragorn,
Legolas and Gimli picking their way through the trees (Huorns?)
as they make their way with the Rohirrim to Isengard.
A blend of the Shire Theme and the
Fellowship Theme is heard as Merry and Pippin sit on the ruined
wall of Isengard enjoying the spoils of war only to be joined,
in time, by Gandalf and the Three Hunters.
A soft, brief version as Pippin is
beginning to realize that, in preparing to ride with
Gandalf, he is being parted from Merry. A moment later, as Merry
gives Pip the last of the Longbottom, clarinet plays the Shire
Theme while strings play the Fellowship underneath.
Merry and Aragorn climb to the top of the guard tower in
Edoras to watch Gandalf and Pippin ride away on Shadowfax. In
the Extended Edition, Merry talks to Aragorn about Pippin and
being left behind.
A brash, urgent version is heard as
Gandalf, Pippin and Shadowfax gallop through the trees toward
When Sam reassures Frodo that they
will return, they will go 'there and back again', first the
Shire Theme then the first notes of the Fellowship is heard. (EE
scene - At the Crossroads near the fallen King)
As Aragorn tells Gimli and Legolas
he will go alone to the Paths of the Dead and they 'beg' to
differ. As the Three Hunters leave the encampment at Dunharrow,
a disconcerting version is heard. (see comment below)
A brief version is heard when Gimli
realizes that Legolas, with no fear of the Dead, has entered the
Paths of the Dead leaving him alone to muster his courage.
An urgent but courageous version is
heard as Gandalf intercedes on Pippin's behalf when the Halfling
finds himself out of his element amongst the fighting in Minas
Tirith. "This is no place for a Hobbit!" But in the end, Pippin
finds his courage and his knife and intercedes on Gandalf's
A horn blends the Rohan Theme with
the first notes of the Fellowship Theme when Éomer reports, "The
scouts report Minas Tirith is surrounded. The lower level's in
flames. Everywhere legions of the enemy advance." (EE version
The opening notes are heard as Sam
confronts Shelob. "Let him go you filth."
A brief opening phrase as the Three
Hunters disembark from the Corsairs ship. Gimli brags, "There's
plenty for the both of us. May the best Dwarf win." (EE
The opening three notes are are
heard when Legolas cuts the howdah of the Mûmakil and then
again, triumphantly, when he kills the beast.
A tentative version is heard during
the Last Debate when Aragorn reveals a plan... a diversion.
Aragorn address those assembled
at the Black Gate, "Men of Gondor... of Rohan... my brothers"
the orchestra plays around with the Fellowship Theme and then
takes up full strength as he says, "But it is not this day. This
day we fight... I bid you stand. Men of the West."
The ultimate triumphant choral
version is heard as the Men of the West charge the Black Gate.
Three notes are heard as the Eagles
engage the Winged Beasts in aerial combat that sound like a
variant on those opening three notes of the Fellowship Theme.
The first three chords of the Fellowship
Theme can be heard on track 16, "The
End of All Things" @ 3:36. This music in not in the movie
but would correspond with the moment after the Ring's
destruction, just after the large troll runs away, that we see
first Gandalf, then Legolas, and then Aragorn getting up from
The opening three notes are hummed
by a choir as Frodo and Sam lie prostrate near the destructing
Mount Doom and the camera fades to black.
Ithilien is heard as Frodo awakens in his light filled room
in Ithilien. The CR-ROTK liner notes state the melodies and
instrumentation of the Shire are
mixed here with hints of the Fellowship Theme. The Fellowship
references are too subtle for me to pick out.
A short phrase is heard as
Aragorn steps through the door of Frodo's room in Ithilien,
and Gandalf, Gimli, and Legolas watch Pippin and Merry cavort on
As we see
Prince Legolas leading a contingent of Elves at King
That exquisitely beautiful fiddle
reprises Fragrance of
Ithilien as the four Hobbits share quiet
thoughts, company and
drinks at the Green Dragon.
A three note iteration of the Fellowship
prelude plays as the last grouping of the Fellowship: Gandalf,
Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin,
walk onto the docks of
the Grey Havens with Bilbo.
Regarding the disconcerting version of
the Fellowship that is heard as the Three Hunters set out on the
Does anyone know/remember why Shore referenced the
Army of the Dead theme in the end of the track "The Palantír"? I'm befuddled!
Doug answered (on moviemusic.com's old forums):
Ah, that’s an easy one. This is the scene where Gandalf
advises Aragorn to look towards the Paths of the Dead. Shore, in his
characteristic brilliance, quotes just a wisp of his ghostly Army of the Dead
I love that moment; that kind of ultra-subtle thematic usage
/ development always thrills me in the LOTR scores, and I’ve had no qualms about
saying so to Howard! In fact… you know that twisted version of the Fellowship
theme that plays while Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas are on the Dimholt Road—the
one that begins with a half-step in the horns rather than a whole-step? I was in
the booth with Peter Jackson and Howard Shore at the recording sessions, and
arrived one day just as they were reviewing this scene. Howard leaned over to
Jackson with a grin and said, “Watch this, Doug’s really going to like this