Composer Bear McCreary on PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS’ Score and Character Themes

If you’re a nerd, you’ve almost certainly heard composer Bear McCreary’s work. His memorable scores are too numerous to list, but Battlestar Galactica, God of War, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and The Rings of Power are a solid sampling. Most recently McCreary worked with his team at Sparks & Shadows on the soundtrack for Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The Disney+ series adapts Rick Riordan’s popular books with pitch-perfect casting, adventures, and music. To that end, Nerdist has the exclusive premiere for the latest installment of Hollywood Records’ The Big Score featuring McCreary discussing Percy Jackson.

In the video, McCreary touches on crafting the themes for each member of the main trio: Percy, Annabeth, and Grover. He says Grover’s theme is very playful with a quirky chord change. It’s almost always a solo flute, with a pan flute thrown in now and again—for obvious reasons. Annabeth’s theme for season one is more subtle. McCreary said she gets a few resonant moments of warmth and depth through English horn and bassoon.

McCreary explains they found Percy’s theme while working on a later episode. Specifically they hit upon it during the powerful moment when Poseidon claims Percy as his son. It was then they found the building music that represented Percy’s journey to becoming a hero. With that discovery, McCreary and his team went back to episode one and added in the scene at the museum. Then, they realized it was Percy’s theme.

Grover, Percy, and Annabeth standing in the forest in Percy Jackson and the Olympians
Disney+/David Bukach

As ever, McCreary’s music highlights the characters’ evolution and the locations they visit.

The Percy Jackson and the Olympians season one finale will air on January 30. You can listen to the soundtrack on Apple Music and Spotify.

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