--> ''BUM-BUM-BUM-BUM-'''BUM!'''''

There's something about those deep-sounding drums tuned to play specific notes that evokes a visceral reaction out of anyone who hears it. Expect any bit of music with timpani in it to be played for maximum drama value. For extra awesome, add an ever louder roll.

Compare DrumRollPlease. For the quiet version, see HeartbeatSoundtrack.
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!!Examples:

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[[folder: Film ]]

* Parodied in ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}'': The dramatic timpani are played by an ''actual'' timpanist in the spaceship itself. And in case you thought that was a one-off gag, the timpanist [[BrickJoke is one of the evacuees]] when the SelfDestructMechanism is activated.
* In ''Film/OnTheWaterfront'', the soundtrack by Music/LeonardBernstein has the quiet title music followed by a pounding fugato for three drummers (though the third is actually on tuned drums rather than timpani).
* In ''Disney/MakeMineMusic'', the hunters are represented by timpani.
* ''[[Film/ANewHope Star Wars]]'' features one during the trench run, as the technicians aboard the Death Star prepare to fire the [[EarthShatteringKaboom Super]][[FrickinLaserBeams laser]] the second time.
* In ''Film/GalaxyQuest'', when Taggart is going back home for the first time and still doesn't realize it's all real, as the bay doors of the ''Protector 2'' open and he sees the space vista, dramatic timpani music plays.
* The first half of the opening credits of ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail'' (the half which has FunWithSubtitles) is accompanied by a piece of stock music called "Ice Floe No.9", dominated by pounding timpani and enigmatic xylophone which combines with the white text on black background to create an atmosphere [[SoundtrackDissonance deliberately at odds]] with the comedy subtitles and the typical Creator/MontyPython absurdism that follows.

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[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* Used during the "EpicFail" segment of ''Series/AttackOfTheShow''.
* Formerly used at the start of the BonusRound on ''Series/WheelOfFortune''...
** ...and at the start of ''Series/{{Jeopardy}}'' when Art Fleming was host.
* The infamous Viacom "V of Doom", combined with the synth piano and and quickly zooming in Viacom V logo, ''freaked'' people out.
* Used, and called for ("TIMPANI!), in the yearly MDA {{Telethon}} when updating the large display showing the amount pledged, at least some years.
* ''Series/GetSmart'' would do a slow version of this during suspenseful moments.

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[[folder: Music ]]

* Richard [=Strauss=]'s "''Music/AlsoSprachZarathustra''" features this in its famous opening, "Sunrise." It never recurs in the remaining half-hour of the work.
* Music/GustavMahler was well-known for writing spectacular timpani flourishes into his symphonies; his Symphonies Nos. 1, 5 and 6 all provide dramatic timpani at one climactic moment. The finale of Symphony No. 7 begins with a bravura flourish played on four timpani. A minimalistic but attention-getting timpani volley opens the third movement of Symphony No. 2.
* The first measure of Grieg's Piano Concerto in A minor features a timpani roll that goes from near silence to near deafening to herald a massive chord from both the pianist and the full orchestra.
* Carl Nielsen's Symphony No. 4 (''The Inextinguishable'') ends with a duel between two timpanists, placed at opposite sides of the orchestra. Yes, that is as spectacular as it sounds...
* The fourth movement of Dmitri Shotakovich's Symphony #5 in D Minor starts and finishes with timpani solos.
* The "Tuba mirum" in Creator/HectorBerlioz's Grande Messe des morts (the French title for the Requiem mass) and BenjaminBritten's War Requiem has loud fanfares accompanied by overpowering drum rolls. "Be slowly lifted up" in the War Requiem is accompanied by timpani volleys played on three drums.
* Havergal Brian's "Gothic" Symphony begins with a short crescendo leading to a loud outburst from two timpanists. The timpani motif recurs at various points, but most impressively near the end of the symphony, "Non confundar in aeternum," which involves ''six'' timpanists.
* In Music/PeterAndTheWolf, when the hunters enter, there are intermittent menacing timpani outbursts.
* Music/RingoStarr plays a very attention-getting timpani in Music/TheBeatles' "Every Little Thing".
* In Creator/EdwardElgar's Enigma Variations, Variation VII (Troyte) begins with a dramatic timpani crescendo played on three drums.
* The opening chorus of Creator/JohannSebastianBach's ''Christmas Oratorio'', "Jauchzet, frohlocket, auf, preiset die Tage",[[note]] "Shout for joy, rejoice, rise up, praise these days"[[/note]] begins with an emphatic passage for solo timpani, occasionally punctuated by the ''basso continuo'' instruments. (The chorus was originally written as the opening chorus of the secular cantata ''Tönet, ihr Pauken! Erschallet, Trompeten!'', or "Resound, ye drums! Ring out, ye trumpets!" - so the drums, and shortly thereafter the trumpets, do as they are told.)
* In Creator/AaronCopland's Symphony for Organ and Orchestra, the timpani pounding out the work's motto theme in the final movement would be more impressive were they not overshadowed by the organ playing at full power.
* In the Scherzo of Creator/LudwigVanBeethoven's Symphony No. 9, the timpani are tuned an octave apart from each other (an unconventional tuning, but also used in the finale of Symphony No. 8). The Scherzo's main theme begins with a descending octave, which the timpanist gets to play loud and unaccompanied several times.

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[[folder: Radio ]]

* ''AmericanTop40'': Used before Casey Kasem announced the No. 1 song of the week.
* ''AmericanCountryCountdown'': To a lesser extent than sister program ''[=AT40=]'', as host Bob Kingsley would use it only on the year-end countdown programs before naming the No. 1 country song of the year. Kingsley has carried the timpani roll over to year-end ''BobKingsleysCountryTop40'' programs.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Real Life ]]

* [[http://youtu.be/IizWc4cJwbw Bugler's Dream]], the most famous theme of the OlympicGames.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Theatre ]]

* AFunnyThingHappenedOnTheWayToTheForum: Miles Gloriosus enters the scene to dramatic timpani flourishes; in most showings, his entourage reflects this by having several drummers.
* In ''Theatre/DerRingDesNibelungen'', the Giants' {{Leitmotif}} is accompanied by pounding timpani at their forceful first entrance in ''Das Rheingold''. The timpani motif stays with Fafner after he becomes a dragon, with the interval altered from a perfect fourth to a tritone.

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[[folder: Video Games ]]

* Most notably during the FinalBoss battle with the BigBad, [[spoiler: [[http://starmen.net/mother3/music/Mother%203%20-%20242%20Master%20Porky%27s%20Theme.ogg Master Porky's Theme]]]], ''VideoGame/{{MOTHER 3}}'' makes the timpani the accompanying background instrument, making his theme all the more bombastic.
* Quite a bit of the ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger'' soundtrack, especially the opening theme and the battle against Magus.
* Played with in ''FinalFantasyVI'': The battle in the opera house against Ultros features a dramatic timpani...because the music is being provided by the orchestra.
** The rest of the soundtrack itself also has dramatic timpani in a few of the themes.
* ''VideoGame/GoldenSun'': the music of Magma Rock [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y628TBNTapg features timpani very prominently.]]
* ''[[VideoGame/PokemonDiamondAndPearl Pokémon Diamond/Pearl/Platinum]]'': [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6z_1cCvVjA The battle theme of Arceus]] is composed mostly out of Timpani and snare sounds, with trumpets and base backing up at certain parts. The song itself, though, is a MissingSecret due to the fact that it only plays when you battle a wild Arceus, for which the item required to do encounter one was never distributed during the games' lifetime. The song itself, however, can still be heard in ''[[VideoGame/PokemonGoldAndSilver Pokémon HeartGold/SoulSilver]]'' via a event Arceus that really was distributed, but in those games, it invokes LongSongShortScene.
* All the battle themes in ''VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire'' (and, by extension, almost all the battle themes in Emerald) have a timpani accompanying the melody of the respective songs.
* The boss battles against [[BigBad Bowser]] in both ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy'' and ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy2''.
* ''SilentHillShatteredMemories'': Dramatic timpani drumming accompanies the Rawshock chases during Nightmare sequences.
* Accompanies the one-up fanfare in ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog''.
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