Becoming a well-rounded music composer has not deterred from Dara's first love. As she puts it, "horror/thriller is my FAVORITE genre to compose". As she makes her way in a most reverenced space in the film industry, Dara reached out to discuss some of her favorite horror film scores, what a lot of the work she does entail, and her deep affinity for American Horror Story.
|Photo by Dan Goldwasser - ScoringSessions.com|
Is there a particular instrument that resonates with horror most effectively?
That being said, communication becomes a large part of that. Even before I speak budget, I like to figure out the project’s timeline and give specific dates for anticipated deliveries. This way, everyone knows what they’re getting and when and it keeps the process very transparent.
I remember once listening to an actor’s delivery of a certain line and immediately their theme popped into my head. All the incredible and hard work that everyone before you has put into the film helps inform your decisions on how to underscore them musically.
I actually love the rhythm and growth that TV provides, so my absolute dream project would be something like American Horror Story. The great thing about horror-themed TV is there’s a much longer leash in terms of experimentation and individuality in music. When you get a chance, listen to some of Mac Quayle’s score for American Horror Story: Freak Show. It’s so unique to the general tapestry of TV music and again, very smartly written.