BAFTA Award winning games, television and film composer James Hannigan – known in part for his contributions to the Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Dead Space, Theme Park, Evil Genius, Warhammer, EA Sports, RuneScape, Transformers and Command and Conquer franchises – is a hugely versatile composer primarily interested in the emotional directness and personal nature of his music.
Among James’s many and varied credits are Dead Space 3, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Freelancer (forerunner to the record-breaking Star Citizen), the BAFTA-nominated Evil Genius, Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 (James’s iconic theme, Soviet March, has collectively received tens of millions of plays on YouTube, and recently reappeared in EA’s Battlefield 4), Terraria: Otherworld, Nintendo’s Art Academy, the Develop Award-nominated music of RuneScape 3, Transformers Universe, Microsoft’s Brute Force, entries in the Warhammer series, Super Smash Bros. 4, Reign of Fire, Grand Prix, Cutthroat Island, Catwoman, Space Hulk, The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn’s Quest, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (BAFTA award nomination), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Parts 1 & 2, Privateer: The Darkening, Command and Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight, Conquest: Frontier Wars, various EA Sports titles in the F1 & FIFA series’, Lost in Space (sound design), and numerous others. His work for TV and Radio includes BBC America’s Primeval, BBC Audio Drama Award 2015-winning Neverwhere, Good Omens, Alien: Out of the Shadows and 2017’s Alien: River of Pain – and his production music is heard every day all over the world in shows ranging from Top Gear to The Apprentice.
Having composed many hours of acoustic music for world class orchestras such as the Philharmonia , Chamber Orchestra Of London, Skywalker Symphony Orchestra and Slovak Symphony Orchestra – recording worldwide at locations such as Air-Lyndhurst, Abbey Road Studios and Skywalker Ranch – James considers himself to be a sound designer, too, and is profoundly interested in the relationship between sound and music.
James’s early textural and atmospheric games industry scores include those of Theme Park World (1999; US title: Sim Theme Park) and Republic: The Revolution (2003) – earning a BAFTA Award and BAFTA Nomination, respectively, for their innovative use of interactive music. In subsequent years James’s scores have received a further four BAFTA award nominations, along with numerous awards – including an IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association) Award for the score of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
An interviewee and contributor for BBC Radio, Classic FM, Bafta Guru, BEEP and many others, Hannigan has had his music performed globally by VGL, The Eminence Symphony Orchestra, The Philharmonia and numerous other ensembles, and he writes using words as well – once penning the first Audio-related cover feature for Develop Magazine. (To read a small collection of James’s articles, click here). Hannigan is also Creative Director of various annual sell-out London-based talk events – supported by Sony, Electronic Arts, BAFTA, Classic FM, PRS For Music, COOL Music, and others.