Brett Aplin is an AFI and APRA Screen Music Award winning screen composer with extensive and varied credits across drama, documentary, feature film and children’s television. He has worked with some of the very best screen practitioners writing across a variety of genres, his music having been broadcast locally on ABC1, SBS, Network Ten, Channel 7, STAN and internationally on Netflix, STARZ, Acorn TV, BBC, Nickelodeon, National Geographic, Animal Planet, The History Channel, ZDF, and Discovery among others.
Brett was raised just outside Red Cliffs, a small town south of Mildura in country Victoria, Australia. Inspired by his grandmother he took up the piano at age 5, taking classical lessons throughout his schooling, while both stepping up on stage with bands and down into orchestra pits along the way. It was during these years he also developed a deep and abiding love for film and an unhealthy obsession with browsing the local video store. However, it wasn’t a straight line from rural Victoria into film and television scoring. In his final year of high school it was gently suggested he cease formal musical studies to concentrate on a more practical and realistic (and financially viable!) “fallback”. career. Being a dutiful lad he heeded this advice for a time, travelling a wild and lengthy detour past a PhD in Immunology before finally coming to his senses to chase his music dream (hopefully minus the whole poverty and obscurity thing).
In the year 2000, in what proved to be a significant break, Brett won the annual Pete Carpenter Fellowship (BMI Foundation, NYC) and travelled to Los Angeles to work with legendary Emmy and Grammy award-winning television composer Mike Post where he composed music for Law and Order: SVU (there’s a good story to go with this one) and generally couldn’t believe his luck. It was a life changing experience.
Since then he has co-composed 34 hours of internationally broadcast television drama, scored 44 documentary films including many that have attracted international awards and accolades, composed or co-composed almost 50 hours of children’s television across 5 series that have screened in over 170 countries worldwide, and has scored multiple documentary features and feature films.
He has been nominated for nine APRA Australian Screen Music Awards, winning “Best Music for a Documentary” for Tiger Dynasty (2012) and “Best Music for a Short Film” for Lucy Wants to Kill Herself (2009). He has also been awarded an Australian Film Institute (now AACTA) Award for his work on Rare Chicken Rescue in 2008, received an AFI nomination for his contribution to the acclaimed documentary A Thousand Encores: the Ballets Russes in Australia in 2010, and an AACTA nomination for James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge 3D in 2014.
Recent credits include composing the music for the second season of the ’60s detective spin-off Ms Fisher’s Modern Murder Mysteries for AcornTV and Channel 7, and the fabulous 8-part crime / horror series The Gloaming for STAN, ABC / Disney and STARZ with co-composers Burkhard Dallwitz and Dmitri Golovko. He has just concluded work on the 2nd series of The Bureau of Magical Things for Nickelodeon.
It looks like he won’t have to fall back on that career as an Immunologist, at least not anytime soon!
Brett’s music scores for film & television have been heard in cinemas and on the following broadcasters and more…