James Hannigan

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James Hannigan
James Hannigan 3.jpg
Background information
Born (1971-07-23) July 23, 1971 (age 46)
Occupation(s) Composer, musician, producer
Years active 1992–present
Website http://www.jameshannigan.com/

James Hannigan (born 23 July 1971) is a multiple award-winning British composer and music producer. His work has included single or multiple entries in the multi-million selling Command & Conquer, Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, Dead Space, Warhammer, Space Hulk, Grand Prix and Theme Park game series; video games including The Transformers Universe, Freelancer, RuneScape, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Red Alert 3, Republic: The Revolution, Evil Genius, Sim Theme Park, Wing Commander: Privateer 2: The Darkening, Conquest, Nintendo's Art Academy, Reign of Fire and others, along with television such as BBC America’s Primeval. He has also contributed music to EA Sports titles, such as those belonging to the FIFA and F1 series and his music has been heard in games such as Super Smash Bros. Wii U and Saints Row 4. In the earlier years of his career, Hannigan was based at Pinewood Studios where he sometimes worked as a Sound Designer on films alongside composing. James Hannigan's other music credits include the Dirk Maggs directed dramas, Alien: Out of the Shadows and the acclaimed BBC Radio 4 adaptations of Neil Gaiman’s Good Omens and Neverwhere.

James Hannigan's Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 theme, Soviet March, is one of the best-known video game themes in history, garnering tens of millions of plays on YouTube and other streaming services.


Hannigan's music scores have been nominated five times by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) and he won a BAFTA Award with Electronic Arts in 2000 for Sim Theme Park (UK title: Theme Park World). In 2010 his score for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince received a BAFTA nomination[1] and won an International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA) award.[2] Most recently, in 2014, Hannigan was nominated for a Develop Award for his work on RuneScape.

Game Music Connect[edit]

In 2013 James Hannigan founded popular yearly conference Game Music Connect with friend and fellow composer and industry commentator John Broomhall, which has been described by UK radio station Classic FM as "The games music event of the year". Held each year at London’s Southbank Centre, the event has been sponsored by Sony, Bafta, Electronic Arts, COOL Music and others, and is currently in its third year.

Written publications[edit]

In 2004, Hannigan wrote "Changing Our Tune", a cover article for the UK's Develop magazine, outlining some of the differences between scoring for games and conventional linear media forms such as film and television.[3] It was the magazine's first audio related cover feature.

In 2015 James Hannigan wrote a series of articles on video game music for Classic FM.[4]

In 2016, Hannigan wrote a foreword for Tim Summer's book, Understanding Video Game Music, published by Cambridge University Press.[5]

Public performances[edit]

In 2007, a collage of Hannigan's music entitled Welcome to Hogwarts[6] was added to Video Games Live debuting in London at the Royal Festival Hall on 22 October 2007, and featuring the Philharmonia orchestra.

Video Games Music Live performing the Red Alert 3 Theme

Hannigan's 'Soviet March' theme from Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 was performed at 'A Night in Fantasia', by the Eminence Symphony Orchestra at the Sydney Entertainment Centre, Australia on 26 September 2009.[7] The popular track can be heard on YouTube.[8] Other public performances include Video Games Music Live and the Games & Symphonies concert series.

On 28 October 2010, a concert of Hannigan's music was held at St. Mary's Church, Nottingham, England. As part of the GameCity 2010 Festival, the concert featured The Pinewood Singers and soloists performing the theme of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1', pieces from Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3, Evil Genius and other titles[9]

On 29 June 2012, Hannigan was interviewed in front of a live audience at the Royal Albert Hall's Elgar Room by presenter Tommy Pearson, as part of the BAFTA Sponsored event 'Conversations With Composers'. The event featured an overview of the composer's work and live performances from soprano, Tamara Zivadinovic.

Live recording[edit]

James Hannigan has worked with the Philharmonia Orchestra, The Skywalker Symphony Orchestra, The Slovak Symphony Orchestra and The Chamber Orchestra of London, recording at Abbey Road Studios, AIR Studios and Skywalker Ranch. The composer is known to be an analogue synthesiser enthusiast.

Credited works[edit]

  • Alien: River of Pain (Audible/Amazon)
  • Alien: Out of the Shadows (Audible/Amazon)
  • Dead Space 3 (Electronic Arts)
  • Terraria: Otherworld
  • Battlefield 4 (Soviet March)
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (EA/Warner Bros. 'Best of 2007', IGN; 'Best VG Score', Movie Music UK Awards 2007).
  • Super Smash Bros. 4 (Nintendo)
  • Transformers Universe
  • Neverwhere (BBC)
  • RuneScape (Jagex Studio)
  • Good Omens (BBC)
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (EA Bright Light Studio)
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (EA Bright Light Studio)
  • Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 (Electronic Arts)
  • Command and Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight (EA LA)
  • Primeval (Impossible Pictures/ITV)
  • Art Academy (Nintendo/Headstrong)
  • The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest (Headstrong/Warner Bros.)
  • FreeLancer (Digital Anvil/Microsoft)
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Electronic Arts/Warner Bros; BAFTA nomination, 2010)
  • Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (Ubisoft/Sony Pictures)
  • Evil Genius (VU Games. BAFTA Nomination, Music, 2005)
  • Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 Uprising (EA LA)
  • Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 Commander's Challenge (EA LA)
  • Republic The Revolution (Eidos. BAFTA Nomination, Music, 2004)
  • Conquest: Frontier Wars (Digital Anvil/Ubisoft)
  • Warhammer: SotHR (Mindscape; Games Workshop)
  • Sim Theme Park
  • NASCAR Thunder 2004 (2003), Electronic Arts, Inc.
  • NASCAR Racing 2002 Season (2002), Sierra Entertainment, Inc.
  • NASCAR Thunder 2003 (2002), Electronic Arts, Inc.
  • F1 2000 (EA Sports)
  • F1 Manager (EA Sports)
  • FIFA 96, FIFA 98 (EA Sports)
  • Theme Park World (EA/Bullfrog; BAFTA Award, 2000)
  • Hasbro Family Game Night 3 (EA Bright Light)
  • Grand Prix 4 (Infogrames)
  • Brute Force (Digital Anvil/Microsoft. Co-composed with Jesper Kyd and Mike Reagan)
  • Catwoman (EA/Warner Bros.)
  • Reign of Fire (KUJU/BAM)
  • Mr. Bean (VG)
  • Lost In Space (Sound Design; New Line Cinema)
  • Theme Park Inc. (EA/Bullfrog)
  • Warhammer: Dark Omen (Electronic Arts; Sound Design)
  • Action Man (Hasbro/Intelligent Games; multiple titles in the series)
  • Privateer: The Darkening (Electronic Arts, Origin Systems)
  • Sim Coaster (EA/Bullfrog)
  • FA Premier League Manager(EA Sports; BAFTA Nomination, 2000)
  • FIFA Soccer Manager (EA Sports)
  • Cutthroat Island (Software Creations)
  • Short Cuts series (Chappell)
  • Big Screen (West One Music)
  • Distorted Reality (Chappell)
  • Jetix (multiple titles in the series)
  • Flight of the Amazon Queen (Renegade)
  • Yamaha SuperCross
  • ATV Racing
  • Infestation (Frontier Developments)
  • MoHo (Lost Toys)
  • Ball Breakers
  • Beasts and Bumpkins (Electronic Arts)
  • Gummy Bears Crazy Golf (Beyond Reality Games)
  • Darklight Conflict (Electronic Arts; additional music)
  • Space Hulk (Electronic Arts/Games Workshop; music for the PlayStation version)


  1. ^ "List of 2010 BAFTA Games Award Winners". Bafta.org. 19 March 2010. Archived from the original on 3 May 2011. Retrieved 12 July 2011. 
  2. ^ "IFMCA Award Winners 2009". Filmmusiccritics.org. Retrieved 12 July 2011. 
  3. ^ "Changing Our Tune by James Hannigan". jameshannigan.com. 16 January 2017. Retrieved 16 January 2016. 
  4. ^ "Video Game Music: Is it Art by James Hannigan". 
  5. ^ "Understanding Video Game Music". 
  6. ^ Welcome to Hogwarts on YouTube
  7. ^ Eminence Symphony Orchestra Eminence Symphony Orchestra
  8. ^ Soviet March on YouTube
  9. ^ "James Hannigan concert report in Develop". Develop-online.net. 21 October 2010. Retrieved 12 July 2011. 

External links[edit]