Cinema has always been a part of Sacha Puttnam’s life, his dad being the iconic and multi-award-winning producer David Puttnam whose films have won 10 Oscars and 25 BAFTAS. Living, breathing and absorbing a world where he was surround by filmmakers, illustrious composers and music producers such as Mark Knopfler, Michael Kamen and George Fenton Sacha’s obvious aptitude for music flourished. Having been mentored by the likes of legendary film composer Vangelis (Chariots of Fire, Blade Runner) and Quincy Jones (Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Miles Davis), Sacha studied at Boston’s Berklee College of Music and then Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Conservatory where he conducted Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony at the Bolshoi Hall on Christmas Day, 1991.
Sacha has scored over 30 films with prestigious directors including Robert Lepage and John Pilger. For long term collaborator director John Drydon Sacha created the soundtracks to several multi-award-winning BBC Radio 4 dramas such as A Suitable Boy and Bleak House. Along with a successful career in classical composition and film, Sacha was the long-standing keys and sometimes bass player for the multi-platinum selling band Bush and his best friend, front man Gavin Rossdale, headlining Woodstock in 1999 to 250,000 fans. Sacha has written and arranged for, and collaborated with, numerous big names in the pop and rock world, including Sia, Marcela Detroit (of Shakespeare’s Sister fame) Reef, Regina Spektor, and Andy Taylor. He released a classical crossover album in 2005 entitled Remasterpiece on EMI and has written for and featured on hundreds of other records including favourites on Café Del Mar.
“I’m thrilled to share my musical tributes to the iconic film scores I grew up around. I know the melodies will resonate with many and I hope that bringing the orchestra to the electronic will enable many more to get to know and love them,” Says Sacha. “This album has allowed me to thank and honour [the] great musicians who generously gave their time and shared their knowledge, inspiring my path as a composer.”
You could say Sacha was destined to create Spirit of Cinema, with his background in film and sensitive ear his versions of these classic film score pieces for piano and orchestra not only do the originals justice but bring a fresh new perspective to these varied genres of music. You can hear more on Sacha’s experience growing up around these films and artists and of course the music in the accompanying podcast, Spirit of Cinema available on all podcast platforms.
Sacha is currently working on a documentary film being entered into the Sundance Film Festival, a BBC Radio 4 drama, a podcast for Audible, and an Irish period drama.