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U of T alumnus wins Golden Globe award: Composer Mychael Danna wins for Life Of Pi score

January 14, 2013

TORONTO, ON – Composer and University of Toronto alumnus Mychael Danna picked up a Golden Globe award January 13 for best film score for the movie Life of Pi.

Danna earned his Bachelor of Music degree in composition at the University of Toronto in 1986, where he won the first-ever Glenn Gould Composition Award and was exposed to the early music and world music techniques that would later influence his sound. Working with theatre groups on campus, Danna met and began to work with acclaimed film director and U of T alumnus Atom Egoyan.

“Since connecting with Mychael at U of T so many years ago, our collaboration has been essential to my work,” said Egoyan. “Mychael is a brilliant musician and composer who is able to enhance any project he works on. He fully commits himself to every film, and his brilliant score for Life of Pi is an expression of everything that makes him so unique.”

Danna went on to score Egoyan’s films including Exotica, The Sweet Hereafter, Ararat and Chloe. He has worked with directors including Terry Gilliam, Mira Nair and Joel Schumacher; other recent projects include Moneyball and 500 Days of Summer. Danna previously scored for Ang Lee with The Ice Storm in 1997 and Ride with the Devil in 1999.

Returning to U of T in 2011 as the inaugural Louis Applebaum Distinguished Visitor in Film Composition, Danna coached composition students and gave a public lecture with Egoyan. During that time he was already working on the score for Life of Pi, released in the fall of 2012.

Composer and U of T professor, Christos Hatzis, worked with Danna during the Applebaum program and offered words of congratulations in a letter to the Golden Globe winner:

“I was glued on my TV set last night and thrilled to hear your name announced as the winner of the Golden Globe and to see you on stage accepting the award,” wrote Hatzis. “Your beautiful and evocative music turns this masterful film into a magical experience. I feel very fortunate to have hosted you during your Louis Applebaum visit at U of T and will be keeping my fingers crossed for the Oscars. We are all very proud of you here at your Alma Mater.”

Danna is also nominated for two Academy Awards for his work on Life of Pi. He is up for best score and best original song (music) for Pi’s Lullaby. Academy Awards winners will be announced Feb. 24, 2012.

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