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date: 25 October 2020

Debney, Johnlocked

  • Durrell Bowman


(b Glendale, CA, 18 Aug 1956). American film composer.

Son of Disney producer Louis Debney, John Debney attended the California Institute of the Arts (BA in composition, 1979) and apprenticed with television composers Mike Post and Hoyt Curtin. Debney at first scored several short, TV, and independent films, but primarily composed TV scores (such as for Disney), winning Emmys for ‘The Young Riders’ (1989), ‘SeaQuest DSV’ (1993–4, main title), and ‘The Cape’ (1996). He is adept at a variety of music and film genres, prefers the emotional resonances made possible by traditional orchestral scoring, and conducts his own recording sessions.

Debney was nominated for a 2005 Academy Award for his voice-, choir-, and woodwind-oriented score for The Passion of the Christ (2004). The film’s soundtrack album was also very successful (peaking at number 19 on Billboard’s US album chart), and he reworked his score into a symphony for large orchestra and choir, which he conducted at its ...

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