Patrick Doyle is a multi-award winning, internationally celebrated composer with a prolific 50-year career in film, television, radio and theatre. Born in Lanarkshire in 1953, he has scored some of the biggest movies in modern cinema history and his music has reached a global audience of over a billion people.
Patrick’s journey to becoming one of the world’s most successful film composers began in 1975 when he graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly RSAMD), where he was made a fellow in 2001.
After many years composing for theatre, radio and television throughout the 1980s, Patrick joined the Renaissance Theatre Company as composer and musical director in 1987. In 1989 director Sir Kenneth Branagh commissioned Patrick to compose the score for feature film ‘Henry V’, conducted by Sir Simon Rattle. Patrick won an Ivor Novello award for the score, and this began a remarkable 30-year composer-director relationship, during which Patrick has written the music for ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, ‘Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein’, ‘Hamlet’, ‘As You Like It’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Thor’, and most recently both ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ and ‘Death on the Nile’.
Patrick has written the music for over 60 international feature films, including the fourth instalment of the biggest film franchise in history, ‘Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’, directed by Mike Newell.
Patrick’s film projects have topped the box office charts in every decade of his career and he has collaborated with some of the most acclaimed directors in the world, including Brian De Palma for ‘Carlito’s Way’, Ang Lee for ‘Sense and Sensibility’, Alfonso Cuaròn with ‘A Little Princess’, Mike Newell for ‘Donnie Brasco’, Amma Asante for ‘A United Kingdom’, Robert Altman with ‘Gosford Park’ and Regis Wargnier for ‘Indochine’.
From global blockbusters such as ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes’ and ‘Thor’, to British classics including ‘Sense and Sensibility’ and ‘Gosford Park’, Patrick’s talents are richly diverse. With ‘Bridget Jones’ Diary’, Patrick’s music became part of the early 2000s cultural zeitgeist and the film’s album was one of the biggest selling of the decade. In the remake of Scottish classic ‘Whisky Galore!’ as well as Disney’s ‘Brave’, Patrick brought unique instrumentation to both scores, inspired by his Scottish heritage. He has written acclaimed original songs for his film scores, including ‘I find your love’ co-written with Nashville-based singer Beth Neilsen Chapman for ‘Calendar Girls’, and ‘Never Forget’ performed by Michelle Pfeiffer for ‘Murder on the Orient Express’.
Patrick’s work extends beyond film. In addition to various original releases including a solo piano album, Patrick has been tasked to write several original concert pieces, including ‘The Thistle and the Rose’, commissioned by His Majesty King Charles in honour of the Queen Mother’s 90th birthday; ‘Tam O Shanter’, commissioned by the Scottish Schools Orchestra Trust, ‘Corarsik’, composed for Dame Emma Thompson’s birthday; ‘The Face in The Lake’, commissioned by Sony Music and narrated by Kate Winslet and his ‘Scottish Overture’ which premiered at Celtic Connections in 2019. Patrick’s most recent original composition ‘Piano Fantasia’ received its world premiere in Kraków in 2022, performed by the Sinfonietta Cracovia.
Throughout his career Patrick’s prolific contribution to film music has been widely recognised. He has been nominated for two Academy Awards and two Golden Globes, one BAFTA and two Césars. He was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from both The World Soundtrack Awards and Scottish BAFTA, the Henry Mancini Award from ASCAP and the PRS Award for Extraordinary Achievement in Music.
Patrick is passionate about musical philanthropy. In October 2007, he hosted a ‘Music from the Movies’ sell-out concert on behalf of The Leukaemia Research Fund at The Royal Albert Hall. It was directed by Sir Kenneth Branagh and starred a host of international talent, including Dame Emma Thompson, Sir Derek Jacobi, Dame Judi Dench and Alan Rickman. Patrick’s score for the silent movie ‘It’, starring Clara Bow, which was originally commissioned by The Syracuse Film Festival in 2013, has been performed by both the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Junior Orchestra as well as Lanarkshire’s Arts and Film Orchestra, as part of pioneering music education initiatives.
2023 marks a pivotal year in Patrick’s career. In February 2023, Buckingham Palace announced that Patrick has been commissioned to compose ‘The Coronation March’ which will be performed live as part of The Coronation of Their Majesties, The King and The Queen Consort, at Westminster Abbey on Saturday 6th of May 2023, to a global audience of hundreds of millions of viewers. In the Autumn, Patrick will return to Scotland to work closely with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra to continue to support aspiring young composers and musicians. The year will culminate with the RSNO performing two celebratory concerts of Patrick’s music in honour of his 70th birthday, at the Usher Hall in Edinburgh on the 17th of November, and the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on the 18th of November.