by Danielle Holian
How and when did you get into composing?
From a very young age, I had a fascination with sound. I started playing guitar and writing songs when I was around 10 years old. As time went on, my skills developed, and by the age of 19, my music had been performed around the world by orchestras of up to 95 performers.
Who or what are your influences?
For me, Influence and inspiration can be found anywhere! Listening with an open mind is a skill all composers must master. I particularly admire the music of film composers; Alexandre Desplat, John Powell and of course, John Williams.
How would you describe your relationship with music?
Writing music can often be an inward struggle. Being an artist, you always strive to progress yourself creatively and intellectually. However, there are few things more rewarding than composing something from scratch, that you are proud of, and hearing it played by an orchestra. Writing music challenges me, but moulds me into the person I want to become.
How would you describe the way you compose? (How things come to you, methods you use.)
I specialise in composing music for film, video games, theatre and other visual media. Generally, for each project, I start by watching the material over and over again. I take everything in, from the pace of the footage, to the emotional palette, and everything in between! Once I understand the project fully, I will compose a number of musical themes that would sonically represent the film. Most frequently, these musical themes are inspired by characters or emotions, for example. That’s the most important stage. Piecing the score together is almost always different for every project.
What piece of music are you most proud of?
I am most proud of the music I composed for the stage production of ‘Gondla’. Gondla was an ambitious project from the get go and a step up from any other project I had done before. I worked with a group of 6 percussionists and one harpist over a 5 week period. The show was a massive success and got raving reviews. You can find a video of the overture on my Facebook page, ‘Jake Morgan Music’. More music from ‘Gondla’ will be posted in the coming days!
What are your hopes for the future?
My hopes for the future are to continue developing my craft, to make a decent living from my career, and to hopefully, one day, win an Academy Award!
What are your main challenges right now in your career?
The main challenge in my career, right now, is the lack of access to facilities and funding. Very few composers have regular access to an orchestra, and music equipment is expensive!
Do you have any advice for upcoming composers?
Be creative, develop a unique sound and listen with an open mind! I encourage any aspiring composers to get in touch with me and I will help in any way I can!
Any last words?