Richard Rodney Bennett

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Sir Richard Rodney Bennett, CBE (29 March 1936 – 24 December 2012) was an English composer.


  • I meet amateur composers all the time who have music flooding through their heads, apparently, but they have no technical ability at all. They don’t actually have the faintest idea how to put it down on the page. These days you can actually get away with that, because you sort of mess around and track it, and all those things. But to my mind, that balance between the excitement of what is called inspiration or just simply a good idea, and the technical routine that goes into writing music down at all, is what makes a composer. You can’t have one without the other and be a complete composer. I can’t imagine how you could.
  • Good music really adds something creative to the film, something which wasn’t there before, an element which wasn’t in the film before. You can be working with very distinguished directors and actors and designers and so on. I take film music very seriously, and every time I do a film, I insulate myself by saying, “This is good, and I’m going to do a good job.” If I went through the film music I do, the commercial work I do, thinking this is just awful and it’s to pay the bills, I would be ashamed of myself. I never have done that. I try and add something really good to each film I do, really the best I can do for that film, but it ain’t writing novels. It’s not a symphony; it’s applied music.

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