Stephen Warbeck - Details


A versatile composer for the stage, screen and television, Stephen Warbeck also heads up two performing groups, Kippers - "mad and anarchistic" - and the more serious Metropolitan Water Board.
Warbeck won an Academy Award in 1998 for Shakespeare in Love (1998), his second film score for John Madden, the first being Mrs Brown (1997). The two men obviously get along. Warbeck explains: "Our first collaboration was a very painful episode of Prime Suspect and I immediately responded to how musical he is. He doesn't claim to be trained but if you play him a tune just once, he retains it. A few hours later, he might say 'why don't we try that tune over this sequence'. If I tell him there'll be strings in a certain section and maybe a clarinet melody somewhere else, he understands exactly what it will sound like. There are lots of short cuts in our communication so it's very enjoyable."
Captain Corelli's Mandolin (2001) required that he make several compositional decisions prior to the onset of production. "Pelagia's Theme" is for the mandolin, and played by Nicolas Cage to the woman he loves, Penelope Cruz. Warbeck also selected the operatic snippets sung by Cage and the La Scala group.
One of Britain's premiere stage composers/arrangers, Warbeck has worked at the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal Court, the Gate, the National and others. Notable productions include a revival of the multi award winning An Inspector Calls, directed by Stephen Daldry, Sam Mendes’ To the Grennfields Beyond at the Donmar, The Triumph of Love at the Almeida, and The White Devil by the Royal Shakespeare Company.
He added television to his repertoire in 1990 with Prime Suspect for which he composed the music for five series as well as numerous other productions including Skallagrigg, Truth or Dare, A Christmas Carol and Element of Doubt (1996). In the process he has been nominated for a BAFTA no less than five times.