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Meet Rahul Shah

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rahul Shah.

Rahul, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am a Canadian composer from Toronto and my musical journey started with piano lessons. I grew up in a loving family with eclectic, ethnic and interesting musical tastes. This has certainly driven my creativity towards discovering new sounds and experimenting to find the story.
Before I discovered the craft of Film Scoring during my undergraduate years in Composition, I was a curious musician and multi-instrumentalist. Currently, I attend the Scoring for Film, Television and Video Games program at Berklee College of Music. It’s been a fantastic experience with amazing faculty and mentors who challenge me.

Studies before Berklee had involved work in composition, production, orchestration and arranging of different genres of music. This helped me to develop an appetite for different instrumental palettes and their functions. My first film proved to be a good challenge and an experience I learned a lot from. Seeing my film on screen encouraged me to compose and love what I do. Getting the opportunity to assist composers at Remote Control Productions was also a great experience in addition to assisting and working with other composers. I also have a passion for film which has helped me interact with directors, producers and editors on film projects.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Luckily I knew from the start that becoming a composer and working in this industry was never going to be a smooth road. Throughout my journey there have been many obstacles, but I’ve used these experiences as opportunities to learn, challenge myself and grow.A big obstacle as a composer is being able to handle rejection. With respect to composing, rejection can be a polarizing or motivating part of growing personally and developing your craft. Along the way, I’ve met some amazing mentors and industry professionals who have shown me what it takes and have provided guidance.When you look at the big picture from afar, your challenges and struggles don’t seem like much. I feel it’s more about having the patience, perseverance and drive to push through and learn from them.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I mainly work on films but I also do some work for television, commercials and video games. In the past, my sound has been defined as classical/orchestral crossover with world elements.I make a conscious effort to not limit my creative musical palette, as I enjoy writing in different styles (orchestral, electronic, jazz, minimalistic, big band, hybrid). Within these styles, I aim to establish a way of writing which serves the picture/context and incorporates musicality. In most cases on a film, you are working for someone who you need to satisfy musically and narratively (director, producer, etc.) in order to help tell a story.I am happy that I know myself enough to be able to compose and that my narrative sensibilities can serve picture. Of course, there is still a lot of improvement that can be made since the industry changes every single day. It helps for me to know where my influences and tastes come from, whether it’s my childhood, upbringing, culture, mentors, education, family or friends that have been part of my life. All the experiences in my life serve as vehicles and fabrics to inspire creativity, consciously or sub-consciously. My deep passion for music and film drives me to create an experience that successfully supports storytelling.

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