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Palpatine's machinations motif was written by John Williams and performed by the London Symphony Orchestra for the 2002 film Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones. The leitmotif accompanies scenes relating to the machinations of Darth Sidious, and nearly makes up the entirety of the Revenge of the Sith 5m1 cue "Palpatine Instructs Anakin."

First introduced in Attack of the Clones as part of the music accompanying Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, secretly Darth Sidious, accepting the emergency powers granted by the Galactic Senate. The music accompanying the scene also includes the mystery motif, "The Emperor's Theme," as well as the conspiracy motif. The machinations motif is later sung by a choir when Tyranus disembarks his solar sailer and meets with Darth Sidious, an instrumental rendition of the leitmotif is played in Revenge of the Sith. The motif plays in "Padmé's Ruminations," when the lovers Padmé Amidala and Anakin Skywalker both look out their windows as the sun sets on Coruscant, with Skywalker ruminating about submitting himself to Darth Sidious in exchange for the power to cheat death in his inability to let go of Amidala. The leitmotif later plays when Sidious instructs the fallen Skywalker to destroy the Jedi at their Temple, as well as when Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda are at the Jedi Archives, recalibrating the Jedi beacon to warn others to stay away from the Temple and discussing the need to eliminate Sidious and the fallen Anakin Skywalker. The motif in the latter discussion is interrupted by a rendition of the mystery motif, dies irae, and "Duel of the Fates." Nevertheless, the motif continues playing into the next scene, when Kenobi visits Padmé Amidala regarding the whereabouts of the fallen Skywalker, where the music transitions to "Anakin's Dark Deeds."

In the 2019 film Star Wars: Episode IX The Rise of Skywalker, an instrumental rendition of the leitmotif is played when Darth Sidious meets and reveals his plans to Rey at the Sith Citadel on Exegol. In the official commercial release soundtrack of the film, the motif makes up a part of the concert suite and track "Anthem of Evil," and is also played in the track "Approaching the Throne."

The motif is played in the 2011 massively multiplayer online role-playing game Star Wars: The Old Republic, as Valis reveals to the future Hero of Tython that the latter's Padawan, Kira Carsen, was secretly a Child of the Emperor,[1] and when Broonmark pledges his loyalty to the Emperor's Wrath. In Timeline 1: Treaty of Coruscant of the Galactic Timeline feature on, the motif is played as Jedi Master Gnost-Dural discusses the Treaty of Coruscant, an unprecedented peace agreement between the Galactic Republic and the reconstituted Sith Empire.[2]

In the 2013 digital expansion Rise of the Hutt Cartel, the motif is played as Sith Empire forces work to find a way to keep Makeb from exploding to extract Isotope-5, a crucial substance needed for the Empire's survival in the Galactic War.[3] In the 6.2 story update to the Star Wars: The Old Republic: Onslaught expansion that was released in 2020, the motif is played when the volatile and vengeful family of Valkorion reunites within the mind of Satele Shan.[4]

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

  1. {{TORcite|type=faction|Jedi Knight|The Defector|[[Czerka asteroid mining facility|Abandoned Mining Facility}}
  2. SWTOR mini.png Timeline 1: Treaty of Coruscant on The Old Republic's official website (article) (backup link)
  3. SWTOR mini.png Star Wars: The Old Republic—Imperial Mission: "Stealing Thunder" on Makeb
  4. SWTOR mini.png Star Wars: The Old Republic—Mission: "Echoes of Oblivion" on Odessen
Themes and leitmotifs
Introduced in Episode IV
Main Title (Luke) · Rebels · Imperials · the Force (Ben Kenobi) · Princess Leia · Death Star · Jawa · Tusken Raider · dies irae
"Star Wars Main Title" · "Mad About Me" (Cantina Band) (IV) · "Dune Sea Special" (Cantina Band #2)
"Here They Come!/TIE Fighter Attack" · "The Final Battle" · "The Throne Room"
Introduced in Episode V
the Empire/Darth Vader · droids · dark side · walkers · "Han Solo and the Princess" (IV) · Yoda · Boba Fett I
Lando Calrissian · "May the Force Be with You" · "The Asteroid Field"
Introduced in Episode VI
Jabba · Jabba's Baroque Recital · revelation · funeral · "Parade of the Ewoks" · Luke and Leia (IV, IV) · The Emperor · trap
"Jabba the Hutt" · "The Forest Battle" (V) · tension · mystery (IV, V) · "Ewok Celebration" (Yub Nub) · "Victory Celebration" (VI)
Introduced in Shadows of the Empire and Rogue Squadron
Xizor's Theme · Dash's theme · Rogue Squadron theme
Introduced in Episode I
droid march · "Duel of the Fates" · Qui-Gon · Jar Jar · Darth Maul · Anakin Skywalker (V) · Shmi
"The Flag Parade" · "Escape from Naboo" · "Symponik Nabooalla" ("Augie's Great Municipal Band") (VI)
Introduced in Episode II
conspiracy (IV, II) · "Across the Stars" (IV, IV, IV) · "The Meadow Picnic"
descent (IV, II) · "The Arena" (Republic) · Palpatine's machinations
Introduced in Episode III
General Grievous · Sith mystery · "Padmé's Ruminations" (III) · "Anakin's Betrayal" (II)
"Anakin's Dark Deeds" (V, II, III) · "Battle of the Heroes" · "Padmé's Destiny"
Introduced in Knights of the Old Republic I and II
Revan · Bastila Shan · Kreia · Sith Triumvirate (II) · Nar Shaddaa · Korriban
Introduced in Clone Wars and Empire at War
Advanced Recon Commandoes · Zann Consortium
Introduced in The Force Unleashed and The Old Republic
The Force Unleashed · Rahm Kota · Juno Eclipse · Redemption · the Commander · Valkorion · Aryn Leneer
Introduced in The Clone Wars, Rebels, and The Bad Batch
Admiral Yularen (V) · clones · Ahsoka Tano · Plo Koon · Padmé Amidala
Savage Opress · the Force (mystery) (IV) · Satine Kryze · Bad Batch
Rebels (VI) · Ezra Bridger · the Grand Inquisitor · "Glory of the Empire" (V) · Maul · Thrawn · Omega
Introduced in Anthology Series
Galactic Empire · Jyn Erso & Hope Suite (Jyn Erso (IV) · hope (IV)Guardians of the Whills · messenger (IV) · Rogue One (IV)
Secrets · Han Solo · Han and Qi'ra · "Empire Recruitment" · Enfys Nest · L3-37 (VI)
Introduced in Episode VII
Kylo Ren (V, V, VI, I, I, II, VII) · Rey (IV, V, VI, II, II, III, VII) · Poe Dameron · the Resistance · Snoke · "Jedi Steps"
"Adagio" · "Scherzo for X-Wings"
Introduced in Episode VIII
"The Rebellion Is Reborn" · Rose Tico · desperation (VI) · Luke in exile
Introduced in Episode IX
"Anthem of Evil" (II, II, III, VI, VII, VIII) · Knights of Ren · "The Rise of Skywalker" (victory motif (II, VII) · friendship motif)
Introduced in Battlefront II, Jedi: Fallen Order, and Squadrons
Iden Versio's Theme · Cal Kestis · Second Sister · Eno Cordova · Main Theme
Introduced in The Freemaker Adventures, Galaxy's Edge, and LEGO Holiday Special
Main Title (Freemakers) · Symphonic Suite · "Tara's Theme" · "Pinteeka Dub" · "Age of Jedi" · connection
Introduced in The Mandalorian
Din Djarin (main theme) · Grogu · Gideon · Bo-Katan Kryze · Boba Fett II
See also: Songs
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: film, Seasons 1–6, Season Seven (1–4, 5–8, 9–12) · Rebels: One, Two
Rogue One · Solo · The Mandalorian (Chapter 1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7 · 8 · 9-12 · 13-16) · The Bad Batch
Video games:
Shadows of the Empire · Republic Commando · The Old Republic: Collector's Edition · YouTube playlist
Battlefront · Battlefront II · Jedi: Fallen Order · Squadrons
Galaxy's Edge:
Oga's Cantina: R3X's Playlist 1
Brennan Anderson · Clint Bajakian · Stephen Barton · Peter Bernstein · Paul Dinletir · Michael Giacchino · Patrick Gleeson
Ludwig Göransson · Mark Griskey · Gordy Haab · Jesse Harlin · Jerry Hey · Chris Hülsbeck · Nick von Kaenel · Dean Kiner
Kevin Kiner · Sean Kiner · Frank Klepacki · Peter McConnell · Bear McCreary · Joel McNeely · Lin-Manuel Miranda
Angela Morley · Jesi Nelson · Danny Piccione · John Powell · Ryan Shore · Jeremy Soule · Joseph Trapanese
James L. Venable · Paul Webb · 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
Los Angeles Master Chorale · 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 Duel of the Fates · A Hero Falls
Bantha Music · Christmas in the Stars · Lapti Nek Dance Remix · Tusken Music · Headspace
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