Dominion’s Season 2 composer spent some time on Twitter this afternoon (unfortunately at the same time that executive producer Vaun Wilmott chatted on Periscope). Here’s the Q&A with fans of the show!
Q How did you come to a decision for the backup chorus singing in Michael’s theme, “Father where are you”?
A My hope is that the choir and vocals supoprt how truly epic, timeless, dangers and beautiful the archangels are.
Q What was the hardest theme to create?
A Gabriel’s theme is still revealing itself to me… It is becoming so much more than I originally thought it would be.
Q I wonder how the characters’ themes are born?
A Both Michael’s theme and Alex’s theme “The Chosen One” came to me in a dream, literally!
Q What’s exciting about the sound of this show compared to others you’ve done?
A It’s so much fun to score! Compared to other projects that were set in one timeframe…timeless.
Q 2 steps from Hell is one of my fave bands and your work is very reminiscent of them – who are your influences?
A Nice! The list is long… sooo long… but it did start with Star Wars, I have to say.
Q Do you hear the music while watching the dailies?
A Sometimes I’ll start to hear tempo, textures, even themes when I’m watching the cut.
Q What’s your fave film scores?
A OMG – not enough characters! When in doubt, listen to Bernard Hermann. 😉
Q How do you figure out what instruments to use for a certain scene in Dominion?
A It’s just what feels right… but some scenes, like the biblical flashbacks, require a certain sound.
Q Do you already have a picture in mind for a character or does it come to you when you watch dailies?
A As I create character themes, it becomes both. I have to decide what is needed for a particular scene.
Q What’s your favorite instrument?
A My mind. 🙂
Q What type of music influences you the most?
A Everything that I love musically and otherwise comes into play. I don’t think there’s just one.
Q After the soundtrack is completed, will we be able to buy it?
A I sure hope so!!!
Q I love how your score just envelopes me into the Dominion world, so much that I forget I’m in my room! Can you describe each character in 1-2 musical terms?
A Ummm…. no… but I can write themes for them!
Q How long does it typically take you to produce a score for a character?
A The themes come fast, but producing the themes (arranging, performing, and recording them) takes longer! But I only have 5 days or so for each entire episode! So it can’t take that long.
Q What composer(s) do you most want to collaborate with?
A Interesting question. I’d love to collaborate with JNH, H.Shore, Williams, Silvestri, or any Newman available.
Q How do you create the ancient feeling of the Dominion setting in your music?
A Ancient instruments, middle eastern scales, wailing vocals, epic choir… blended with modern sounds!
Q Do you ever work on your score outside? What is your favorite nature spot int he world/or one you draw inspiration from?
A Actually, getting outside is great for creativity. Anywhere peaceful works – lets me listen inside.
Q Do certain characters have certain sounds or instruments attached to them for you?
A For whatever reason, coming up with Noma’s theme this past week, I couldn’t stay away from using gu
Q Star Wars, John Williams – my first soundtrack crush.
A Me too!!!
Q What genre have you not yet scored for? Do you have plans to do so?
A I’ve been really lucky enough to create for so many genres! All I can say is I LOVE scoring Dominion!
Q when you first start creating a cue for Dominion, do you begin at a piano, guitar, computer, or on paper?
Q What is the most unique instrument you incorporate into your scoring?
A A new idea… a fresh perspective.
Q What was your favorite moment of ComicCon 2015?
A Like, everything that happened the entire time I was there.
Q Are there any instruments that you want to use in your scores, but don’t quite fit in?
A Banjo. Always banjo.
Q What’s your favorite theme that you’ve composed for Dominion so far?
A It’s most often the most recent one I’ve composed, to be honest! But I love all of them for Dominion!
Q What was the best piece of advice you received at Berklee College?
A Practice your scales. A LOT.
Q Do you have a theme music for Vaun Wilmott?
A Yes. It utlizes the banjo.
Q Random Q but have you ever heard of Kitaro?
Q What do you do to get energized or excited about writing music for a new episode?
A When I can add something unique to a scene and take it to the next level… THAT.
Q What are some of the ancient instruments you use?
A I recorded live Ney and and Duduk for the flashbacks in Episode 203… and many others!
Q What’s the hardest part of the process when putting music to film?
A It depends on the cue…sometimes it’s coming up with the idea, sometimes it’s recording/producing it.
Q What type of music inspires you? Outside of composing?
A It depends on the day…sometimes NIN at 11 is inspiring, sometimes Bela Bartok, or Debussy, Satie… My list goes as well James Horner (RIP), Randy Eldelman, Danny Elfman… too many to mention.
Q Have you used or considered using a theremin? Or is it too Star Trekkish?
A Haha… I’ll see if I can fit it in… why not?? #challenge accepted
Q After composing a season, what’s your favorite way to unwind?
Q How did you first get hooked on Moog synthesizers?
A I’ve used them since I was 15! It was always a dream to be able to use modulars too.
Q What was the hardest instrument for you to play/master?
A I put the most effort into the piano and it was well worth it.
Here’s Michael’s Theme played on cello:
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