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Mr. Hitchcock's suggestions for placement of music (08/Jan/1960)

The following is a transcript of a document dated 8th January 1960 and details Alfred Hitchcock's suggestions to Bernard Herrmann regarding the placement of music within the film Psycho.



January 8th 1960



Music in opening of picture.

Music through first sequence.

No music in the Real Estate Office.

Music should start the moment we see the money on the bed and continue through Marion's drive up to the night when she is blinded by headlights.

There should be no music when the empty car is discovered.

Start music the moment Marion drives away from the Highway Patrolman and continue when she arrives at the Used Car Lot. Music all through the Used Car Lot continuing until she arrives at the Motel. Stop music when she blows her horn.

There should be no music at all through the next sequence (the first Motel sequence).

Start music in the Hardware Store and continue music all the way through the Hardware Store and through Arbogast's search. Stop the music when we see Norman on the porch just before Arbogast enters because we must hear the sound of the approaching car.

Start music as soon as Arbogast leaves Norman on the porch steps and play it through the telephone conversation. Continue music for Arbogast's return, his approach to the house -- and continue the music until Mother emerges with the raised knife and shut music off when Arbogast's face is slashed.

Start music back at the Hardware Store until Sara and Lila come outside the Sheriff's house when the music should stop.

Start music after Sheriff says: "If the woman up there is Mrs. Bates -- who's the woman who's buried out at Green Lawn Cemetery?"

Start music when Norman goes into house and carries Mother down. Stop music when we come outside the church.

Start music as the truck drives off after the church scene. Continue music during the drive right until Norman comes down and joins them at the Motel.

No music until Lila starts to go up to the house on her own. Continue music until the skeletal head turns so music segues into the scream of Lila and Norman.

The rest of the picture is silent even up to the End Title.