We need to talk about Rachel Portman
Rachel Portman is not only a highly proficient music composer, she’s also very good at it. Scoring over 100 soundtracks for internationally known movies, the British composer’s portfolio is simply incredible.
I remember the first time I noticed Portman’s music in a movie. After basically everyone of my friends urged me to finally watch Lasse Halström’s “Chocolat”, I got it on DVD — one of my very first ones back in the day. I was impressed by so many things — the acting, the scenery, the uplifting story, but most of all, the exquisite musical score. Years later, I still love to improvise in Rachel Portman’s style on the piano, and it never fails to take me back to this first acquaintance with this brilliant composer.
100+ scores you say? Damn right! There are so many outstanding scores to choose from, with “Chocolat”, “The Cider House Rules”, “Never Let Me Go”, “Oliver Twist” and “Emma” probably being the most famous ones. In my pre-Spotify years, I ended up spending ridiculous amounts of money on imports from Japan or the United Kingdom in order to get my copy of the wonderfully comical “The Road To Wellville”, “Benny & Joon”, the less accessible “Beloved”, “Used People”, “Where Angels Fear To Tread”, and, most importantly, Portman’s hands-down best score “The Legend Of Bagger Vance”, selling for up to 530€ on amazon. This splendid soundtrack showcases the composer’s vivid style, irresistible themes, and riveting musical richness that make Bagger Vance Portman’s ultimate chef d’oeuvre.
With “Despite The Falling Snow”, Rachel Portman delivers another musical masterpiece. The 2016 drama set in 1950’s Moscow in the middle of the Cold War stars Rebecca Ferguson, who is known for her roles in “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” and Brett Ratner’s “Hercules”. The movie is gorgeous, and accompanied by a sumptuous and grandiose soundtrack. With delicate themes and a sweeping orchestration, “Despite The Falling Snow” easily ranks among Portman’s very best scores.
Romain Butti is a Content Creator from Luxembourg, based in Berlin.