Soundtrack: <I>Your Honor</I>
Issue: May/June 2021

Soundtrack: Your Honor

Showtime’s 10-episode legal thriller Your Honor stars Bryan Cranston as Michael Desiato, a respected New Orleans judge whose teenage son, Adam (Hunter Doohan) is involved in a hit-and-run. The incident leads to a high-stakes game of lies, deceit and impossible choices. Michael Stuhlbarg stars as Jimmy Baxter, the head of a crime family, with Hope Davis playing his wife, Gina. The series also stars Carmen Ejogo, Isiah Whitlock Jr. and Sofia Black-D’Elia.

Your Honor is produced by CBS Television Studios in association with King Size Productions, and is based on the Israeli series Kvodo, created by Ron Ninio and Shlomo Mashiach. Peter Moffat serves as showrunner, executive producer and writer of multiple episodes. Edward Berger executive produced and directed the first three episodes, which begain airing in December.

Volker Bertelmann (pictured, left) served as composer on the series and shares his thoughts on its original soundtrack:

“Working on Your Honor was a real pleasure. What was challenging, was to cover the wide range from emotional journey to tension-filled investigations, and to find an instrumentation serving this palette. This included the flugelhorn for the court theme and since coincidences repeatedly lead to trouble, a specific theme was created to illustrate fate. Moreover, electronic sounds were used to accentuate the claustrophobia experience. When Adam lost his asthma inhaler in the first episode and gasped for breath, I sensed that a variety of respiratory sounds would be needed. So I recorded the air flow of a bass clarinet and used noise swells to render the waves of anxiety audible. Further recordings included percussion in an empty factory —the source for reverb and the industrial feel of the film score. But actually, the most intense sound in the first episode - when Michael is cleaning his car - simply comes from a small metal piano lamp: a constant banging, sounding like an enormous gong or metal plate, which turned out to be one of the most frequently-used sounds.”