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Interview with Catherine Grealish

Catherine Grealish

Catherine Grealish

FSC:  What inspired you to become a film composer?

CG:  After many years of being a musician – performing, teaching and writing music – I discovered that composing music needed to be my primary role in the music world. After looking into all the ways of doing composing for a living I discovered film and media composing. For me it “checked all the box” because it wasn’t just writing music, it was collaborating with other creatives and working with an inbuilt muse: the director and the picture. It also required the ability to write in many genres and work on a great variety of projects. This was incredibly attractive to me. For the first time in my musical existence I really felt like I finally fit somewhere in the music world. Up to that point I knew music was my vocation but at every turn I felt like a square peg in a round hole. Becoming a film composer was a huge relief for me. I have never felt more fulfilled.

FSC:  Where do you want to be in 10 years?

CG:  I want to be making a good living from creating music; music that I am proud of. I want to be working with inspired directors, creating great products that get out there into the public eye and gain distribution. Basically what I am doing right now but with bigger budgets and more visibility.

FSC:  Have you ever considered branching into music for something like video games?

CG:  I am currently working on my second indie video game. It will be released on android and iPhone platforms hopefully by the end of this year. Working in video games is fantastic and something I hope to do a lot more in addition to film/TV work. I have also worked on a number of web series.

FSC:  What is your favorite piece of yours?

CG:  That is a really hard question! I love a lot of my compositional works but there is always the reality that I know I can do better. I am very proud of my two concert works “Artist and The Muse” and “For Those Who Have Walked Ahead”. They are both available on iTunes, Google Play and most places digital music is sold. My favorite film cue is Metamorphosis from the soundtrack to All Things Hidden. It involves my three favorite instruments: piano, cello and the human voice. This soundtrack is also available for purchase.

FSC:  Who is your favorite film composer?

CG:  Alexandre Desplat is my favorite film composer. I love his music, his great melodies and simple approach. I feel like every note is considered and there is never a note too many. I also appreciate his journey as a film composer. He refers to his career as a bottle of red wine. He has worked hard for decades, and highly deserves the acclaim he now has. I also love John Powell, Rachel Portman, John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith, Bernard Herrmann…..this list goes on. And not in that order. I am not sure what order they would be in! So much great music and so many wonderful points of view.

FSC:  What other composer do you see your music being most like?

CG:  I do feel like I am a bit like Desplat. I am a huge fan of both Ravel and Debussy so I hope there is a little of them in my sound. The most important thing is to find your own voice, your own unique point of view and contribution to the music world, and to let that shine as brightly as possible.

FSC:  What is your proudest work?  Why?

CG:  I am really proud of my work for digeridoo and chamber orchestra “For Those Who have Walked Ahead” because it was dedicated to my late aunt Wendy Delaney who did so much for the aboriginal community in Tasmania, Australia where I am from. I am proud that this work gave her memory a voice and brought her more of the recognition that she deserves. I did a similar thing for a friend of mine who lost her child, Matilda, just days after she was born. Music is an amazing force and I hope that I will honour that and channel it to the best of my ability throughout my career.

FSC:  Thank you for your time.

For more on Catherine, visit her website at

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