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Described as the U.K.'s answer to Bear McCreary, Murray Gold is one of the most successful TV composers of the last decade. Born in Portsmouth in 1969, Gold started playing the piano at the age of six, and in his teens he arranged for high-school brass ensembles. After studying History at Cambridge University, he worked on a theater production at the Edinburgh Festival and became a scriptwriter for Channel 5 before his first score of a BBC-TV adaptation of Vanity Fair launched his composing career. A regular stalwart of writer Russell T. Davies, Gold provided the soundtracks for Queer as Folk and Casanova, and in 2005 he became the musical director of the revamped Doctor Who, creating a new arrangement for its iconic theme tune. Since then, five compilation albums featuring the music for the sci-fi series have been released. Featuring vocal contributions from soprano Melanie Pappenheim and the Divine Comedy's Neil Hannon, the collections have become the biggest-selling TV soundtracks in the U.K. In 2010 he performed at The Proms and arranged and orchestrated two live Doctor Who concerts at Cardiff's Millennium Centre and London's Royal Albert Hall. Gold has also scored several movies, including Death at a Funeral and Alien Autopsy, and wrote the soundtrack to Doctor Who spinoffs Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures.
Murray Gold (born 28 February 1969) is an English composer for stage, film, and television and a dramatist for both theatre and radio. He is best known as the sole composer of all music for the British TV series Doctor Who since its revival in 2005."Murray Gold". Twitter. 2011-02-28. Retrieved 2011-02-28. "Murray Gold (composer bio)". Manners McDade Artist Management. Manners McDade & McCleery Music Ltd. 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-07-17. Retrieved 2007-10-14.
Gold has been nominated for a BAFTA four times in the category Best Original Television Music, for Vanity Fair (1999), Queer as Folk (2000), Casanova (2006) and Doctor Who (2008). His score for the BAFTA winning film Kiss of Life was awarded the 'Mozart Prize of the 7th Art' by a French jury at Aubagne in 2003. He has also been nominated four times by the Royal Television Society in categories relating to music for television.
He has worked with Russell T Davies, the former writer and executive producer of Doctor Who, many times in the past on projects such as Casanova (starring David Tennant), The Second Coming (starring Christopher Eccleston) and Queer as Folk 1 & 2. He has also provided the incidental music for the 2000s version of Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) alongside James Bond composer David Arnold, who provided the theme tune.
He wrote the theme tune for the Channel 4 series Shameless and scored the period drama The Devil's Whore. More recently Gold scored another David Tennant series, in BBC1's Single Father. In this, Gold opted for a more popular music style ensemble rather than writing for orchestra.
Since 2012 Murray Gold has composed the musical score for the drama series Last Tango in Halifax. In 2014, Gold scored the BBC series The Musketeers.
Since 2005, Gold has served as musical director for the new series of Doctor Who for the BBC. In this capacity, he created a new arrangement of the show's theme (originally composed by Ron Grainer) and also composes the show's incidental music. Silva Screen released a compilation of Gold's Doctor Who incidental music from the first and second series, entitled Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack, on 11 December 2006. A second CD, Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack – Series 3, was released on 5 November 2007 and a third, Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack – Series 4, was released in November 2008. He has also been seen very briefly in the show itself, making a cameo appearance (and wearing a false moustache) in the 2007 Christmas special "Voyage of the Damned". Also, music from the 2008–2010 specials was released on 4 October 2010, entitled Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack – Series 4: The Specials, and on 8 November music from Series 5, entitled Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack – Series 5, was released.
Gold's initial arrangement of the Doctor Who theme did not include "middle eight" portion originally used in the theme, although he later reinstated it for a rearrangement of the theme introduced in the series' 2005 Christmas episode and subsequently used in the 2006 series of the programme.
Gold has created many themes to be associated with various elements of the show, creating two themes for The Doctor ("The Doctor's Theme" and "The Doctor Forever"), Rose Tyler, Martha Jones, Donna Noble, Gallifrey, The Master, Astrid Peth, the Cybermen, and the Daleks.
Gold re-arranged the Doctor Who opening theme in 2010 for Series 5. With the 2010 series, Gold also created two new musical identities for the Eleventh Doctor ("I Am The Doctor" and "A Madman With A Box," replacing themes previously associated with the Ninth and Tenth Doctors), a theme for Amy Pond, the Silurians and the Daleks. He also continued to use the theme for the Cybermen, as well as several action cues such as "Corridors and Fire Escapes" and "All the Strange, Strange Creatures."
Although his music for the 2005 series of Doctor Who relied largely on sampled sounds, his later arrangements for the show, beginning with "The Christmas Invasion," have been more orchestral, often being recorded by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, supplemented by vocal performances with Melanie Pappenheim and others. One of the most well-known orchestral numbers is 'Abigail's Song', sung by Katherine Jenkins, from the 2010 Christmas special 'A Christmas Carol', whose soundtrack was released in March 2011. The orchestral scoring (partly reflecting a larger budget) contrasts strongly with music for the classic 1963-1989 series of Doctor Who, as produced by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, Mark Ayres et al., which generally had an electronic feel, with innovative instrumentation.
Gold also wrote the theme tunes for Doctor Who spin-offs The Sarah Jane Adventures and Torchwood, and composes music for the latter series alongside Ben Foster. A selection of their compositions, entitled Torchwood: Original Television Soundtrack, was made available during August 2008. He arranged the theme tunes to Totally Doctor Who and Doctor Who Confidential, both of which are variations on the Doctor Who theme.
Gold has created, arranged and orchestrated three special live concerts for the music from Doctor Who. The first, "Doctor Who: A Celebration", was played at the Millennium Centre in Cardiff in 2006; the second, the 2008 Doctor Who Prom, was part of the BBC Proms on 24 July 2008 at the Royal Albert Hall in London; the third, the 2010 Doctor Who Prom, was part of the BBC Proms hold on 24 and 25 July 2010 at the Royal Albert Hall again.
In March 2010, his Doctor Who soundtrack entered UK radio station Classic FM's Hall of Fame as that year's second highest new entry. In 2011, it remained in the Hall of Fame, but three places lower at number 228 out of 300.Cite error: The named reference Manners was invoked but never defined (see the help page). Gilbert, Gerard (23 December 2014). "Sir Derek Jacobi on 'Last Tango in Halifax' and being just an ordinary fella". The Independent. Independent Media Group. Retrieved 13 January 2015. "Doctor Who - Fact File - Voyage of the Damned". BBC. 2007-12-25. Retrieved 2007-12-26. Russell, Gary (2006). Doctor Who: The Inside Story. London: BBC Books. pp. 129–132. ISBN 0-563-48649-X. Brown, Mick (1979). "Music Ex Machina". Radio Times, reprinted on mb21 web site. Mike Brown. Retrieved 2007-10-14. "Dr Who fans enjoy Proms special". BBC. 2008-07-27. Retrieved 2008-07-27. "Proms Schedule 2010". BBC. 2010-04-27. Retrieved 2010-04-27. "Classic FM Website". Classic FM. 2010. Retrieved 2010. "Hall of Fame 228" Classic FM Retrieved 22 June 2011
Film, stage and radio
Gold has scored a number of British and American films, including Death at a Funeral directed by Frank Oz and Mischief Night, directed by Penny Woolcock. Other projects include Ant & Dec's 2006 film Alien Autopsy and 2009 drama film Veronika Decides to Die.
In 2001, his radio play Electricity was given the Imison Award—named after former BBC radio drama script editor Richard Imison—for best new play after its broadcast on Radio 3 in 2000. It subsequently transferred to the West Yorkshire Playhouse in 2004 and was performed with Christopher Eccleston in the lead role. Others of his plays include 50 Revolutions performed by the Oxford Stage Company at the Whitehall Theatre, London in 2000 and Resolution at Battersea Arts Centre in 1994.
Gold also wrote the radio play Kafka the Musical, broadcast on Easter Sunday 2011 on BBC Radio 3, starring David Tennant. It won the 2013 Tinniswood Award for the Best Original Radio Drama.Cite error: The named reference Manners was invoked but never defined (see the help page). "Radio Drama Awards - Past winners". The Society of Authors. Retrieved 10 December 2013. "Radio 3: The Wire". Radio Plays and Radio Drama. Retrieved 10 December 2013. "Kafka the Musical". BBC Radio 3. BBC. April 2011. Retrieved 15 April 2011. "Winners of the BBC Audio Drama Awards announced". BBC Media Centre. 27 January 2013. Retrieved 16 February 2013.