“I believe in expressing ideas and emotion through music in the simplest of terms. For me, music need not be a demonstration of virtuosity or a mere means of parading the newest technological tools, but more for the purpose of transparently carrying an essential message to the listener.” – James Hannigan, Bafta’s ‘Conversations with Composers’ at the Royal Albert Hall.
British Academy Award winner and five-time BAFTA original music nominee James Hannigan is a composer & multi-instrumentalist profoundly focused on the emotional directness and personal nature of his music.
Perhaps best known for his contributions to blockbuster franchises such as Harry Potter, Dead Space, Evil Genius, RuneScape, Theme Park, Warhammer and the Command & Conquer game series', Hannigan's music effortlessly straddles the indie and mainstream arenas, transcending the stylistic expectations and constraints of genre, delivering a compelling and recognisable voice all of its own.
Hannigan's work for TV and Radio includes BBC America’s Primeval, the award-winning BBC adaptations of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere and Good Omens, Amazon/Audible's Alien trilogy and Terry Pratchett's Unseen Academicals – and his unique and emotive music can be heard regularly all over the world in countless shows, commercials and trailers - ranging from Early Man to Top Gear.
An IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association) Award winner, Hannigan's many credits include: RuneScape (the world’s most popular free MMORPG), Dead Space 3, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 (the iconic theme of which, Soviet March, has collectively received over 50 million plays on YouTube), Nintendo’s Art Academy, Transformers Universe, Theme Park World (BAFTA Award, 2000), Terraria: Otherworld, Brute Force, Evil Genius (BAFTA Nomination, 2005), Republic: The Revolution (BAFTA Nomination, 2004), entries in the Warhammer and Space Hulk series, Freelancer, Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. 4 (additional music), Reign of Fire, Grand Prix, Cutthroat Island, Catwoman, The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn’s Quest, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (VG), Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (VG; BAFTA nomination, 2010), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Parts 1 & 2, the technically dazzling fusion of film and game: Privateer: The Darkening (with Clive Owen, John Hurt & Christopher Walken), Command and Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight, Conquest: Frontier Wars, entries in the EA Sports F1 & FIFA series’ - and more.
A public speaker, industry commentator and visiting lecturer, Hannigan is also the co-founder and creative director of several international conferences - among them sell-out talk event, Game Music Connect, and the forthcoming London Southbank-based, Screen Music Connect - which have variously been supported by Sony, Electronic Arts, BAFTA, Classic FM, BASCA, PRS For Music, Spitfire Audio, COOL Music and others in earlier years.
James Hannigan has recorded with several world-class orchestras during his career so far - ranging from The Philharmonia Orchestra, The Chamber Orchestra Of London to the The Skywalker Symphony Orchestra and Slovak Symphony Orchestra - at locations such as Air-Lyndhurst, Abbey Road Studios and Skywalker Ranch. An audio enthusiast with an arsenal of vintage synthesizers, processors and sound manipulation tools at his disposal, James considers himself a sound designer as well as a composer, taking a profound interest in the interplay between sound and music in everything he does. Films featuring James's sound design include New Line Cinema's Lost In Space.
An interviewee and contributor for BBC Radio, Classic FM, Bafta Guru, BEEP and many others, Hannigan has had his music performed globally by Video Games Live, The Eminence Symphony Orchestra, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, The Philharmonia and other ensembles, and he writes using words as well – once penning the first Audio-related cover feature for Develop Magazine. (Click here for a small collection of James’s articles).
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“James Hannigan has not only written the best music in the video game series, but he has surpassed [the] film score. That’s right, this is better than the film score. I really hope someone over at Warner Bros. is listening to this score.” ‘Movie Music UK’ on Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
A score which combines musicality with wit. It adds atmosphere throughout, whilst remaining entirely in keeping with the humorous and fun nature of the game. The subtle development of the score according to the development of the game works effectively, whilst complementing the sound and dialogue perfectly. A creditable combination of interactive technology and highly […]The British Academy of Film and Television Arts on ‘Theme Park World’ (US title, ‘Sim Theme Park’).
Sound 10/10. The music in Republic is amazing. It is possibly the greatest and most appropriate music in any game ever. The sweeping eastern classical music fits the game so well it is untrue. As soon as you are able to start a rally … you will know what I mean.Game FAQs