“Shore Leave” (Season 1, Episode 15)
None of the scores Gerald Fried wrote for Star Trek is more varied than his score for “Shore Leave.”
Every time the “amusement planet” brings the Enterprise crew’s imagined scenarios to life, Fried is able to introduce a new style of music. And so the audience is treated to a bouncing, playful theme for Alice and her White Rabbit; a jauntily fiddled faux Irish jig as Kirk chases his Academy nemesis, Finnegan; a flourish of medieval strings as Yeoman Barrows imagines herself a fairy tale princess, which then blares on the brass when a knight attacks McCoy; and even a gong-heavy cue using the pentatonic scale when Sulu is attacked by a samurai warrior.
As in “The Paradise Syndrome,” Fried’s “ethnic” cues in “Shore Leave” may sound embarrassing to listeners today. The grinding “stripper music” that scores McCoy’s reappearance with a scantily clad dancer on each arm also has not aged well.
But, also as in “The Paradise Syndrome,” Fried delivers a beautiful love theme to secure the score’s overall greatness. It is one of the most fully developed love themes in Star Trek, consisting of not only the lilting flute sections at its beginning and end, but also an aching, yearning string section in between.
Gerald Fried gave “Shore Leave” a score every bit as imaginative and fun as the makers of the amusement planet intended their world to be.