John Powell is one of the most in-demand composers in Hollywood, with credits including the Academy Award nominated score for How to Train Your Dragon, Shrek, four of the five Bourne movies, Chicken Run, Kung Fu Panda 1 and 2, and The Italian Job. His forthcoming film scores include Solo: A Star Wars Story and How to Train Your Dragon 3.
“You’re a film composer,” he feared people would say. “You shouldn’t be writing classical music.”
But Powell needn’t have worried. In 2016, “A Prussian Requiem,” the 10-part oratorio from his debut album Hubris (June 14 / 5 Cat Studios), premiered to acclaim at the Royal Festival Hall in London with the Philharmonia Orchestra.
Emboldened by the success of “A Prussian Requiem,” Powell set to work on the album, which he describes as his own greatest act of hubris and, ironically, “Requiem” itself is an exploration of one of the great acts of hubris of the 20th century — the military decision that started the First World War.