Jack Wall (composer) - Career

Career

By late 1995, Jack Wall was living in Los Angeles and was married to singer Cindy Shapiro, who he had met in 1994. She knew Ron Martinez, who was starting a video game company, PostLinear Entertainment, and he asked Wall to work for it as a composer. He composed the soundtracks for several games for PostLinear; the first released was Vigilance in 1997. His daughter Gracie was also born early in 1997. After leaving the company, he composed the soundtrack to 2001's Myst III: Exile, which was his first orchestral score and the work that he said put him on the map as a video game composer. It was also interesting to him, as it was a sequel to the first video game he had ever played, Myst. Myst III was nominated for the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences "Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition" award, which it lost to the Tropico soundtrack.

In 2002, Wall became one of around 20 co-founders of the Game Audio Network Guild (G.A.N.G.) as well as senior director. The group works to promote the appreciation of video game music, as well as serve as a professional resource for video game music composers and musicians. It was developed and headed by Tommy Tallarico. As of 2010, Wall serves as vice chairman, after stepping down from heading the board of directors in 2007. He continued to compose soundtracks for games such as The Mark of Kri and Unreal II: The Awakening. His work on Myst IV: Revelation in 2004 earned him his first three awards, those of "Best Live Performance Recording", "Best Original Vocal Song: Choral", and "Music of the Year" from the G.A.N.G. awards.

Wall, along with Tommy Tallarico, has produced the Video Games Live concert series, which began on July 6, 2005. The two had been planning the concert series, which presents orchestrated versions of music from dozens of games, for three years. The concerts consist of segments of video game music performed by a live orchestra with video footage and synchronized lighting and effects, as well as several interactive segments with the audience, conducted by Wall. Video Games Live was intended to take the idea of a symphonic video game music concert, which was popular in Japan, and combine it with a rock concert to make it appealing to western fans. The series is international and ongoing, with more than 70 shows planned for 2009. Although Wall composed the soundtracks to three games released in 2005 including the award-winning score to Jade Empire, his works released since then have been 2007's Mass Effect and 2010's Mass Effect 2. Mass Effect's score earned Wall several awards and nominations, as did Mass Effect 2.

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