Garry Schyman

Garry Schyman and the Music of Bioshock

Featuring: Garry Schyman

Garry Schyman leads this study on some of his original music! Get ready to dive into exciting cues from the popular games Bioshock, Bioshock 2, and Dante’s Inferno. Schyman is also an educator at USC and brings his wisdom on copyright law. This event was moderated by ASA past president Del Engen.

About Garry Schyman

BAFTA-winning composer Garry Schyman is a rare artist who can claim the trifecta of success – Popular, Critical, and Artistic.  His work is loved by fans of such games as the Bioshock Trilogy, Dante’s Inferno, Shadow of Mordor, and the Destroy All Humans Trilogy. He is one of the most decorated composers for his video game music, and he is a true composer’s composer loved and respected by those who deeply appreciate his talent and mastery of the craft.

From the spare violins of a city beneath the sea to the choral hosannahs of hell and a comically symphonic alien Armageddon, Garry Schyman has proven himself as one of the most impressive scoring voices in the genre of videogame music with his acclaimed scores for such series as “BioShock,” “Dante’s Inferno” and “Destroy All Humans!” But that’s just one stylistic facet of a composer whose work encompasses prime time television, mini-series and feature films, adding to a decades-long body of work that has seen him conduct orchestras at sound stages the world over from Hollywood to London’s Abbey Road as he has scored some of pop culture’s most iconic characters.

 A graduate of the University of Southern California, Garry Schyman began his scoring career in 1980’s as part of the composing team of renowned TV maestro Mike Post, contributing to such hit shows as “Magnum, P.I.” and “The A-Team” before becoming a prolific composer for such films as “Horseplayer,” “Spooky House” “Lost In Africa” and “Tornado!”.

While he’d score the live action “video games” of 1993’s “Voyeur” and its 1996 sequel, Schyman’s music for this arena entered a new animated realm with 2005’s “Destroy All Humans!” with a score that combined a knowing salute to 50’s sci-fi B-movie music with vibrant, contemporary action energy. But it was 2007’s “BioShock” that burst onto the video game scoring scene as a full-fathom dive into unique musical terrain. Taking its cue from modernistic classical music, Schyman created a unearthly atmosphere for an undersea dystopia. Melodically haunted strings turned to frenzied dissonance, violin solos became odes for paradise and innocence lost, while the chilling arrival of the monstrous diver Big Daddy struck terror into the player with pounding, rusted percussion.

Schyman has since used powerful combinations of orchestral melody, fierce percussion and rock and roll chords for such fantastical action games as “Resistance: Retribution,” “Front Mission Evolved” and “Dante’s Inferno”. Most recently, his music went in completely unexpected dimensions for the sunnily sinister cloud city of Colombia in “BioShock Infinite,” taking a stripped-down, turn-of-the-century musical approach for this globally acclaimed entry into the franchise’s ever-expanding world, where ironically genteel harmonicas, strings and bells mixed with berserk percussion for the game’s aerial battles.

Schyman’s video game scores have brought him critical acclaim and industry recognition, including two BAFTA nominations (one win) twice winning the industries most prestigious award Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences, the Best Original Score from the Spike TV Games Awards for “BioShock” and Game Audio Network Guild awards for “BioShock,” as well as their nominations for “Destroy All Humans!” and “Destroy All Humans! 2.”

Schyman lives in Los Angeles with his wife and son where he composes and finds time to teach scoring for visual media at the University of Southern California.  


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