What is composing?

A composer is someone who creates new, original music. Composing involves the nurturing of ideas. There are so many different ways of composing, so many different ideas about what “composing” is, so I can only speak for myself. In my experience, composing is storytelling. It’s expressing yourself through musical elements like harmony, rhythm, melody, and timbre. The process of composing usually involves an inkling of a musical idea that is developed into a piece.

In the world of film and multimedia projects, composers play a pivotal role in the storytelling. A composer with a dramatic sensitivity can breathe life into a film. The musical world they create becomes an extension of the world in which the characters live. Through music, we can hear what each character is thinking, their deepest desires and fears. We receive clues about what might happen next.

When I was studying at Berklee, I wrote a piece for a class taught by Bill Elliott. He’s a fantastic teacher, and such a knowledgable composer, arranger, and orchestrator. The initial idea of the piece started in my head. I wrote it down and ended up working it out on piano. After going through a few drafts and consulting my teacher, I came up with this final version. We were fortunate to have studio time and a hired chamber orchestra. You can hear the recording below:

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