I teleported myself into BBC’s Doctor Who TV show to cover the fan-favourite “The Shepherd’s Boy” aka “Breaking the Wall” from the Series 9 episode “Heaven Sent”, composed by Murray Gold.
Watch Doctor Who | Heaven Sent “The Shepherd’s Boy” (Cover) on YouTube now.
How many seconds in eternity? Well, one second of eternity has passed since my previous Doctor Who video, where I asked the fans on Youtube what soundtrack I should cover next. Doctor Who’s “Heaven Sent” aka “The Shepherd’s Boy” aka “Breaking the Wall” was clearly the most requested track. So, in celebration of over 100k views on that aforementioned video, I wanted to make this one extra special! The visuals for this cover were so time-consuming to make that I started to feel like that bird from the Shepherd’s Boy story, chiseling away a mountain of diamond. Or, you know, like the 12th Doctor punching his way through a wall of Azbantium. Either way, the mountain is gone and I wish you all a good time with this cover of “The Shepherd’s Boy”!
Also, don’t forget to check out my previous Doctor Who tribute titled “Regeneration”, aka 13th Doctor’s theme, featuring all new-Who Doctor’s themes
► Quiz time:
Just like in my previous Doctor Who tribute “Regeneration”, I managed to squeeze in some references to other music from Doctor Who into this “Shepherd’s Boy” arrangement. This time there are just two references, but they are much better hidden. I expect the first one to be discovered soon, but the second one will be a challenge! Can you spot them both? Post your thoughts in the comments!
► Hidden clue:
There is another Doctor Who cover on its way to this channel and you can find a visual clue about it in this video! Can you find the clue and figure out which song will be next? Let me see your theories in the comments!
► Making of the “Shepherd’s Boy” cover
As I was arranging the music for this cover, I realized two important things:
1. “The Shepherd’s Boy” works like one big long crescendo. This fits the “Heaven Sent” story perfectly and is an integral part of the music, that the cover should replicate.
2. The melody was clearly written for and really shines on bowed string instruments.
Thankfully, I recently started working with the amazing violinist Sarah Bergé, who was happy to join this project. She gave a beautiful performance, both in front of the microphone and the camera!
Apart from Sarah, Stefanie J. returns once again as the solo vocalist, leading us into the middle section with her haunting singing. Last but not least, soprano Jana Marie Gropp helps to push the finale into “epic” territory!
► About “The Shepherd’s Boy”:
Doctor Who “Heaven Sent”, the penultimate episode of Series 9, is regarded as one of the show’s best. Peter Capaldi’s performance as the 12th Doctor was fantastic (absolutely fantastic) and during the episode’s climactic “Breaking the Wall” montage, Doctor Who’s long-time composer Murray Gold introduced a breathtaking piece of soundtrack that would quickly turn into a new fan-favourite: “The Shepherd’s Boy” – also known under the title “Breaking the Wall”, for obvious reasons.
Murray Gold had already laid the foundation for the “Shepherd’s Boy” theme in a Doctor Who episode that aired two years before “Heaven Sent” and interestingly, it was in that very episode that we got our first glimpse of Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor. Back then, the soundtrack titled “This Time There’s Three of Us (The Majestic Tale)” introduced the melody that would later return for the “Breaking the Wall” sequence. But it wasn’t until those final moments in “Heaven Sent” that this melody finally got the spotlight it deserved in the form of the fully developed “Shepherd’s Boy” theme.
For the remainder of Peter Capaldi’s run as the 12th Doctor, “Breaking the Wall” became sort of a more emotional alternative to the actual 12th Doctor theme “A Good Man?”. It was so popular that a reprised version of “The Shepherd’s Boy” was even used for Peter Capaldi’s final moments in Doctor Who, accompanying the 12th Doctor’s regeneration scene.
So even though Murray Gold probably did not plan it (or did he?), this theme essentially bookends the 12th Doctor’s time in Doctor Who!
Original music by Murray Gold with orchestration by Alastair King.
This is a fan tribute. Doctor Who is owned by the BBC.
Cover arranged, produced and performed by Borna Matosic.
Solo vocals performed by Stefanie J.
Soprano performance by Jana Marie Gropp.
Visuals based on original Heaven Sent cinematography by Stuart Biddlecombe.
Video production by Borna Matosic & Stefanie J. @ BAMBOO BANDIT: