The title of this article is conjectural.

Although this article is based on official information from the Star Wars Legends continuity, the actual name of this subject is pure conjecture.

"General Grievous's theme" is a piece of music written by John Williams for the soundtrack of the 2005 film Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith and its respective score. It represents the character of the Separatist General Grievous and was performed in 2005 by the London Symphony Orchestra and the London Voices, the choir used for the previous two prequels. The theme appears three times in Revenge of the Sith and twice in its soundtrack. "General Grievous's theme" prominently features a number of strings, French horns playing the melody, and the London Voices. The composition also makes an appearance in the Revenge of the Sith video game, LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga, and Star Wars: The Old Republic, as well as in the 2017 version of Star Wars Battlefront II.

Conception and development[edit | edit source]

Composer John Williams wrote the score for Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith,[10] as he had done for all five previous Star Wars films. In 2005, he worked with the London Symphony Orchestra and the London Voices choir to perform the score, as he had done for the two previous prequels.[11] Both the Orchestra and choir were used in "General Grievous's theme,"[1] the main theme utilized to identify with the Separatist character General Grievous, the cyborg leader of the Separatist Droid Army following the death of Count Dooku.[5] The soundtrack was released on May 3, 2005 and again on May 24 as an MP3 download.[2] On September 25, 2015, Sony Classical announced it would be releasing the Revenge of the Sith soundtrack along with the other five films' soundtracks in three new sets: the Star Wars: The Ultimate Vinyl Collection, the Star Wars: The Ultimate Soundtrack Edition, and the Star Wars: The Ultimate Digital Collection on January 8, 2016.[4]

Summary[edit | edit source]

"General Grievous's theme" appears twice on the Revenge of the Sith soundtrack. The track "Grievous Speaks to Lord Sidious" has the most discernible and complex form of the theme. The piece is generally polyphonic, meaning that sections play their own unique parts dissimilar in rhythm and pitch to those of other instruments or groups. In this track, the theme starts off with a rapid string part. Trumpets then come in, followed by horns playing the main melody, which is broken into three sections by short rests. This is repeated once, before the London Voices enter, singing between the brass phrases. The theme ends suddenly as the chorus and orchestra drop off all at once. The theme also appears in the track "Star Wars and The Revenge of the Sith." This version is simply a tuba soli—a part that features a single section rather than an individual musician—which is followed by the beginning of the theme, replacing the horns with tubas.[1]

Use[edit | edit source]

In the soundtracks[edit | edit source]

"General Grievous's theme" is featured for the first time four minutes and forty-six seconds into the track "Star Wars and The Revenge of the Sith," the first track on the Revenge of the Sith soundtrack. It is also heard at the beginning of "Grievous Speaks to Lord Sidious," the soundtrack's thirteenth track.[1]

In the movies[edit | edit source]

The theme plays during the lightsaber duel between General Grievous and Obi-Wan Kenobi on Utapau.

"General Grievous's theme" is exclusively used in Revenge of the Sith. It appears in the scene aboard the Invisible Hand, General Grievous's flagship, when Grievous is seen for the first time in the film. It appears a second time in the scene showing Grievous arriving on the sinkhole planet Utapau in a Sheathipede-class transport shuttle. This scene contains the theme's most complex appearance. The theme is heard for a third time during the lightsaber duel between Grievous and Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi in the hangar in Pau City, the capital city of Utapau, which results in Grievous's death. The theme is also used in the chapter menu on the film's DVD that uses the hangar scene as the screen background.[5]

In the Expanded Universe[edit | edit source]

Legends[edit | edit source]

The theme appears in the 2005 video game Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, in the level "Showdown with Grievous."[6] It also appears in the level "General Grievous" in the Episode III section of the 2007 non-canon video game LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga.[7] Additionally, the 2011 BioWare online role-playing game Star Wars: The Old Republic included the theme, played during the Huttball player-versus-player warzone instance.[8]

Canon[edit | edit source]

The theme is played in the 2017 version of Star Wars Battlefront II whenever the player spawns as General Grievous, as well as when the player is defeated.[9]

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

Leitmotifs and themes
Introduced in Episode IV
Luke Skywalker · The Rebellion · Princess Leia · Jawa · The Force · Tusken Raider · The Death Star · Dies irae · The Empire

Recurring themes/concert pieces/songs:
"Star Wars Main Title" · "Cantina Band" · "Here They Come!/TIE Fighter Attack" · "The Final Battle" · "The Throne Room"

Introduced in Episode V
Leitmotifs: The Empire/Darth Vader · C-3PO and R2-D2 · Han Solo and Princess Leia · Yoda · Lando Calrissian · Boba Fett

Recurring themes: "The Asteroid Field"

Introduced in Episode VI
Leitmotifs: Jabba the Hutt · Ewoks · Luke and Leia · The Emperor

Concert pieces/songs: "Jabba the Hutt" · "Lapti Nek" · "Jedi Rocks"
"The Forest Battle" · "Ewok Celebration"/Yub Nub · "Victory Celebration" (VI)

Introduced in Holiday Special
"Light the Sky on Fire" · "Goodnight, But Not Goodbye" · "A Day to Celebrate"
Introduced in Droids and Ewoks
"In Trouble Again" · "Ewoks" · "Friends Together, Friends Forever"
Introduced in Rogue Squadron and Shadows of the Empire
"Rogue Squadron Main Title" · Xizor's Theme · Dash's theme
Introduced in Episode I
Leitmotifs: Qui-Gon Jinn · Jar Jar Binks · Darth Maul · Anakin Skywalker · Shmi Skywalker

Recurring themes: "Droid Invasion Theme" · "The Flag Parade" · "Escape from Naboo" · "Duel of the Fates" · Funeral

Introduced in Episode II
Leitmotifs: Conspiracy motif · Mystery motif · "Across the Stars" · The Republic

Themes: "The Meadow Picnic"

Introduced in Episode III
Leitmotifs: General Grievous · Sith mystery · "Anakin's Betrayal" (II) ·"Anakin's Dark Deeds" (II) · "Battle of the Heroes"

Themes: "Padmé's Destiny" · "Padmé's Ruminations"

Introduced in The Clone Wars and Rebels
Leitmotifs: Clone Wars victory · Ahsoka Tano · Padmé Amidala
Rebels · Ezra Bridger · The Grand Inquisitor · Maul · Thrawn

Diegetic music: Glory of the Empire (V)

Introduced in Knights of the Old Republic and The Force Unleashed
Old Republic theme · The Force Unleashed · Rahm Kota · Juno Eclipse · Redemption
Introduced in Rogue One, Solo, and Galaxy's Edge
Leitmotifs: Jyn Erso and Hope (IV) · Galactic Empire · Guardians of the Whills
Han Solo · Enfys Nest

Themes: Galaxy's Edge

Introduced in Episode VII
Leitmotifs: Kylo Ren (V, VI, I, and II) · Rey (VI) · Poe Dameron · The Resistance · "Jedi Steps"

Themes/songs: "Han and Leia" · "Jabba Flow" · "Snoke"

Introduced in Episode VIII and IX
Rose Tico · Desperation · "Last-ditch fanfare" · Luke in exile · Knights of Ren
Real-world music
I · II · III · IV · V · VI · VII · VIII · IX
Original Soundtrack Anthology · Ultimate Vinyl Collection
Ultimate Soundtrack Edition · Ultimate Digital Collection
Spin-off films & TV:
Ewoks · The Clone Wars movie, seasons 1–6, Season Seven: Episodes 1–4, Episodes 5–8, Episodes 9–12 · Rebels Season One & Season Two · Rogue One · Solo · The Mandalorian (Chapter 1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8)
Video games:
Shadows of the Empire · Republic Commando · The Old Republic
Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
Oga's Cantina: R3X's Playlist 1
Clint Bajakian · Peter Bernstein · Paul Dinletir · Michael Giacchino · Patrick Gleeson · Ludwig Göransson · Mark Griskey
Jesse Harlin · Jerry Hey · Chris Hülsbeck · Dean Kiner · Kevin Kiner · Sean Kiner · Frank Klepacki · Joel McNeely
Lin-Manuel Miranda · John Powell · Ryan Shore · Jeremy Soule · James L. Venable · John Williams · Joseph Williams
London Symphony Orchestra · London Voices
City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra · Royal Scottish National Orchestra
New London Children's Choir · Seattle Sinfonia Orchestra
Kamuela Philharmonic Orchestra · Los Angeles Master Chorale · Kathleen Battle
Vienna Philharmonic · Hamburger Symphoniker · Jefferson Starship · The Hu
Sheet music books
The Phantom Menace · Attack of the Clones · Revenge of the Sith
Music from the Star Wars Trilogy: Special Edition · Selections from Star Wars
Star Wars: A Musical Journey: Episodes I-VI · Star Wars Episodes I, II & III Instrumental Solos
Star Wars for Beginning Piano Solo · The Force Awakens · Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Music videos
"Lapti Nek": The Music Video from Jabba's Palace · The Duel of the Fates · A Hero Falls
Bantha Music · Christmas in the Stars
Special Extended Dance Remix of Lapti Nek from the Original Soundtrack Recording of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
Tusken Music · Headspace
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