Psycho continues to climb up the Classic FM Movie Music Hall of Fame: from 97th in 2012, to 84th last year and 80 this year. The film is perhaps the most effective collaboration between Bernard Herrmann and Alfred Hitchcock.
In 1960 Bernard Herrmann created possibly the greatest piece of horror movie music ever. The sound of the screeching violins attacking a single note over and over again to accompany Psycho's infamous shower scene was an incredibly important feature of one of cinema's most memorable scenes. But this striking minimalist approach was almost out of necessity, with Hitchcock being forced to make the film on a lower budget than his previous films after the studio Paramount initially refused to produce it. Herrmann used the lower budget to his advantage, writing for a string orchestra and ignoring Hitchcock's original request for a jazz score. Hitchcock certainly recognised the power of Hermann's music: his name appeared in the opening credits just after Hitchcock's, a distinction unprecedented in the annals of cinematic music.
What do you think? Have your say at the Movie Music Hall of Fame hub >
Movie Music Hall of Fame 2013
Which soundtracks did you and other movie fans vote for last year?
The Classic FM Hall of Fame 2014
Every Easter we compile the definitive poll of classical music. Which is the world's favourite piece?
Discover film music
From the great composers to their wonderful scores, find out more about the wonderful world of movie music.
Saturday Night at the Movies
Every Saturday on Classic FM, Howard Goodall dedicates two hours to the greatest film scores.