Emmy-winning composer, Kris Bowers, scores compositions that step beyond the traditional boundaries of genre to form new and thrilling music. Bowers currently scores Netflix’s critically acclaimed “Dear White People,” and Shonda Rhimes’ “For The People,” starring Hope Davis. As a composer of color in network television, Bowers is in a small group of composers closing the diversity gap, and at 29 years old, stands as the youngest composer scoring a network TV show.
Bowers recently wrote the music and lyrics for an original song featured as the main theme and end credits for “Madden NFL 19: Longshot,” the latest ‘story mode’ entry in the long-running “Madden” video game franchise, launching August 10. Earlier this year, Bowers scored the critically-acclaimed drama, “Monsters and Men” which premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and is coming to theaters October 5. He recently completed the score for Peter Farrelly’s latest drama, “Green Book," starring Academy Award-winner Mahershala Ali and Academy Award-nominee Viggo Mortensen. In addition to scoring the film, Bowers was the piano-playing double for Ali and performed all the on-camera piano playing in the film.
Bowers has scored a wide range of films including Amazon’s TV movie “The Snowy Day,” for which Bowers won a Daytime Emmy. He composed for “Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me,” starring Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey, “Seeds of Time,” “Play it Forward,” “Kobe Bryant’s Muse,” featuring Kobe Bryant, and “I Am Giant: Victor Cruz.” He also scored “Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You,” which premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, and “Little Boxes” which premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival and was purchased by Netflix.
In addition to composing for film and television, Bowers has recorded and performed with artists such as Q-Tip, Aretha Franklin, Marcus Miller, José James, Ludacris, Christian Rich, Jay-Z, and Kanye West. He was commissioned by the Alvin Ailey dance company to create an original composition for “Untitled America,” a modern ballet piece that shines a light on the impact of the prison system on Africa-American families. The ballet was choreographed by Kyle Abraham, a MacArthur Genius Grant winner, with whom Bowers is a long-time collaborator. Furthermore, Bowers’ rich and eclectic sensibilities can be heard in his debut album with Concord Jazz, “Heroes + Misfits”, which opened at number one on the iTunes jazz chart.
Bowers, a Juilliard-trained musician, has received numerous awards and accolades for his excellence in jazz performance. Bowers was one of 40 artists selected to perform at the White House for the 2016 International Jazz Day, hosted by President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama. In 2011, he also won the coveted Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, where Aretha Franklin picked Bowers as a favorite to win during the semi-finals concert. Moreover, he was named a Steinway Artist, one of twelve iTunes “Artists to Watch” and was one of six composers to participate in the Sundance Film Composers Lab at Skywalker Sound in 2015.
Bowers resides in Los Angeles, CA.