Rachel Portman

Rachel Portman

born on 11/12/1960 in Haslemere, Surrey, United Kingdom

Rachel Portman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Rachel Mary Berkeley Portman,[1] OBE (born 11 December 1960)[1] is an English composer who is best known for scoring films.

Early life and education

Portman was born on 11 December 1960 in Haslemere in Surrey, England, the daughter of Sheila Margaret Penelope (née Mowat) Portman and Berkeley Charles Berkeley Portman.[1][2]

She was educated at Charterhouse School and became interested in music from a young age, beginning composing at the age of 14.[3]

After finishing school, Portman studied Music at Worcester College, Oxford. It was here that her interest in composing music for films began as she started experimenting with writing music for student films and theatre productions.[3]


Rachel Portman's career in music began with writing music for drama in BBC and Channel 4 films such as Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, Mike Leigh's Four Days in July and Jim Henson's Storyteller series.[3]

Since then, Portman has written over 100 scores for film, television and theatre, including The Manchurian Candidate (Jonathan Demme), Oliver Twist (Roman Polanski), Hart's War (Gregory Hoblit), The Legend of Bagger Vance (Robert Redford), Beloved (Jonathan Demme), Benny and Joon (Jeremiah Chechik), Life Is Sweet (Mike Leigh), Never Let Me Go (Mark Romanek), Grey Gardens (Michael Sucsy), The Duchess (Saul Dibb), One Day (Lone Scherfig), The Vow (Michael Sucsy), Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (Wayne Wang), The Lake House (Alejandro Agresti), Infamous (Douglas McGrath), Mona Lisa Smile (Mike Newell), and The Human Stain (Robert Benton).

Portman is perhaps best known for her music soundtrack compositions in the movies Chocolat and The Cider House Rules.

Her other works include a children's opera, The Little Prince (which was later adapted for television) and Little House on the Prairie, a musical based upon the Laura Ingalls Wilder books Little House on the Prairie (2008). Portman was commissioned to write a piece of choral music for the BBC Proms series in August 2007.

Rachel Portman married in 1995 Uberto Pasolini Dall'Onda, with whom she had three daughters, Anna Gwendolen, Giulia Ginerva and Niky Joan Pasolini Dall'Onda. [4]

Awards and honours

Portman's first award was received as the result of scoring "a large body of work" for The Storyteller, for which she received the Anthony Asquith Award from the British Film Institute.[5]

Later, Portman became the first female composer to win an Academy Award in the category of Best Musical or Comedy Score (for Emma in 1996). (Previously, female songwriters Barbra Streisand, in 1977, Buffy Sainte-Marie, in 1983, and Carly Simon, in 1989, each won Oscars, but in the category of Best Original Song). Portman was also nominated for Academy Awards for her scores for The Cider House Rules in 1999 and Chocolat in 2000.

On 19 May 2010, she was given the Richard Kirk Award at the BMI Film & TV Awards for her contributions to film and television music. Portman is the first woman to receive the honour.[6]

Portman was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2010 New Year Honours.[7]

In 2015 Portman received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Miniseries, Movie, or a Special for her work on Bessie.



  1. ^ a b c Rachel Portman Biography (1960-), FilmReference.com website.
  2. ^ "The Peerage". Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c "Rachel Portman Biography". Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  4. ^ http://www.thepeerage.com/p64023.htm#i640228
  5. ^ BBC Composer of the Week: Rachel Portman at 15:36 by Donald Macleod, March 9, 2018 (retrieved April 19, 2018)
  6. ^ "Rachel Portman Receives Richard Kirk Award at BMI Film & TV Music Awards". BMI.com. Retrieved 2010-10-20. 
  7. ^ "No. 59282". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2009. p. 11. 

External links

This page was last modified 21.08.2018 13:39:47

This article uses material from the article Rachel Portman from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia and it is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.