Netflix has released the Original Series Soundtrack for Shadow and Bone—based on Leigh Bardugo’s worldwide bestselling Grishaverse novels. The mystical and epic original score comes from composer Joseph Trapanese (Tron: Legacy, The Greatest Showman), who took great influence from fairytales, Russian stories, magic, and fantasy. The soundtrack is available digitally today, April 23, alongside the highly anticipated series launch on Netflix. Joseph Trapanese is best known for his sleek score work for blockbuster films like Tron: Legacy, Straight Outta Compton, The Greatest Showman, Oblivion and the Raid series. As a composer, arranger, and producer for movie, television, theater, and video game music, he has collaborated with a number of mainstream musical acts. His first major break came in 2010 when he worked with Daft Punk on the sweeping digital soundtrack to Disney’s Tron reboot/sequel.
Based on Leigh Bardugo’s worldwide bestselling Grishaverse novels, Shadow and Bone finds us in a war-torn world where lowly soldier and orphan Alina Starkov has just unleashed an extraordinary power that could be the key to setting her country free. With the monstrous threat of the Shadow Fold looming, Alina is torn from everything she knows to train as part of an elite army of magical soldiers known as Grisha. But as she struggles to hone her power, she finds that allies and enemies can be one and the same and that nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. There are dangerous forces at play, including a crew of charismatic criminals, and it will take more than magic to survive.
Joseph was brought onto the project early on by Eric Heisserer (Showrunner, Executive Producer, Writer), Shawn Levy (Executive Producer), and Leigh Bardugo (Author, Executive Producer). He read the novels and scripts for inspiration and by the time the series entered post-production, he had written 40-50 minutes of music to contribute to the score. Joseph developed distinct themes for each character, giving each one their own sonic world in the valiant mystery tale of Shadow and Bone.
“Joseph had a monumental challenge ahead of him when he joined the team,” says Eric Heisserer. “Not only did he need to create a thematic space for each of our six lead characters in this debut season, but he also had to build a different musical language for the major regions of this invented world, most notably the kingdom of Ravka, loosely drawn from 1800s Czarist Russia. And what the rest of us soon learned was: Joseph could build all of that and more. The flourishes and flavors he gave to each piece linger with you long after the episode leaves the screen, and while he’s embraced all that inspired the settings of the show, everything feels bespoke. I cannot separate the show from his score, and I’m in awe of him for it,” concludes Heisser.
Leigh Bardugo adds, “Joseph and I met up for coffee early on, and I knew pretty quickly that we were on the same page. We played Prokofiev favorites for each other and I inflicted some very pitchy renditions of old folk songs on him. I knew his work and how deftly he could transport a listener to a new world, but I had no idea what it would be like to hear him work his magic on Ravka and the Grishaverse. There’s certain music that sparks imagination. Joseph’s extraordinary work on Shadow and Bone not only helped to bring this world fully alive, but also changed the way I experience my characters’ stories. I can’t wait for audiences to share in that experience.”
Regarding the soundtrack for Shadow and Bone, Joseph Trapanese had the following to say:
“Nothing is more thrilling as a composer than to build a musical world to compliment an extraordinary and grand adventure like Shadow and Bone. Eric Heisserer, Shawn Levy, and Leigh Bardugo were incredibly generous with their time and guidance, inviting me to be a part of the series as soon as possible, so I could really get to know these characters and their stories as I wrote their themes. As the team was finishing on set, I was putting the final touches on extended suites and ideas for each character. It was incredibly rewarding to explore and expand these themes throughout the season, and I hope we get to continue exploring each corner of this world for many more episodes. I couldn’t be more excited or proud to share this score with you, and I’m grateful to the entire team at 21 Laps and Netflix for supporting our work through all the challenges of this past year.”
- Ask the Saints
- Court Demonstration
- True North
- Royal Archives Heist
- Face the Truth
- Erase the Past
- Hope for the Future
- Her Name is Alina Starkov
- Just Ask
- A Message
- Helpful Goat
- Fight for the Light
- Five Markers
- Strike Now
You can purchase the soundtrack to Shadow and Bone digitally now and also check out the series on Netflix!
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