Robert Leslie Bennett is an American composer, conductor, and multi-instrumentalist living in Los Angeles. His music can be heard in Feature Films, Video Games, Television Series, and also at performances for the concert stage. Originally from Indiana, his studies in composition and conducting took him from Berklee College of Music in Boston to Indiana University for a Masters degree, as well as Rotterdam, Netherlands and Cologne, Germany, having received international scholar grants for study. From 1998-2000 Robert taught music theory at Indiana University while completing graduate studies there. In 2000, making a move to Los Angeles to pursue film scoring, he met film composer Hans Zimmer and was invited to assist him at the well renowned Remote Control studios. There, Robert worked on such films as Black Hawk Down and Sprit: Stallion of the Cimarron.
Some of Robert's recent projects include the ABC prime time TV series The Goode Family created by Mike Judge, FOX's thriller Wrong Turn 2 and the Spiderman 3 Video Game released by Activision. Robert has recorded and conducted his music with orchestras in Seattle, Los Angeles, Australia, Sweden, Prague, Budapest, Bratislava and at Abbey Road in London. His music spans many styles, from orchestral to electro-pop.
Robert is also active writing music for the concert stage. Numerous works of his have been awarded national and international prizes from institutions including: Midwest Composers Symposium, ASCAP/Morton Gould Young Composer Awards (twice), ISCM Cultural Foundation of Warsaw, Deutscher Akademischer Austauschungdienst Bureau, Berklee College of Music, Polish National Radio Orchestra, ASCAP PLU$ awards, and Society of Composers, Inc.
Raised in southern Indiana, Robert's mother was a part-time musical instructor and as a young child, he quickly became adept in several instruments. Developing an additional early fascination with computers and electronic music, Robert began accruing an arsenal of cheap synthesizers and by age 12 had won the Indiana State Media Fair grand prize in computer programming for a video game he'd created, which of course included an original theme song coded entirely in Visual Basic program language, blaring noisily from the lone tiny speaker of the boxy old IBM PCjr.
While songwriting as a guitarist and pianist in various bands throughout his teenage years had been his primary love, upon acceptance to Berklee College of Music in Boston, his focus quickly shifted to modern art composition. Robert immediately began garnering numerous scholarships and awards among the Composition, Film Scoring, and Conducting departments, and served as Assistant Conductor to the Brookline Symphony and Guest Conductor for the Berklee Wind Ensemble. Graduating Summa Cum Laude, and having developed a profound passion for composing contemporary art music, Robert received an internationally funded grant to continue his studies at Rotterdam Konservatorium in the Netherlands under the mentorship of Dutch composer Klaas Devries. The following year Robert returned to his home turf to obtain a Masters Degree in Composition from the acclaimed Indiana University School of Music, where he also served as an Associate Professor of Music Theory. A growing desire to fuse his work in contemporary art music with the collaborative aspects of film scoring he'd studied at Berklee led him to the decision to move to Los Angeles in the Spring of 2000.
Shortly upon moving to Los Angeles, Robert was introduced to legendary film composer Hans Zimmer, who invited Robert to assist him at the well renowned Remote Control Studios in Santa Monica. Apprenticing Zimmer while working on such films as Black Hawk Down was a profound education in film music production, and a deeply treasured period for Robert where several life long friends were made amidst the brilliant collection of artists. In addition, having little experience within the film industry, the sudden opportunity to work alongside the likes of luminary Director/Producers such as Ridley Scott and Jerry Bruckheimer was a thrilling undertaking.
Meanwhile, Robert's orchestral abilities quickly caught note of Haymaker Records label-owner (and reknown trailer music supervisor) Ruben Nava. Under the collective band name Ars Arcana, Robert and Ruben released several CDs of dramatic orchestral music which have found homes in literally 100's of blockbuster film advertising campaigns.
Robert's own career has continued to develop, having become a highly sought after composer for Film, TV, and Interactive Multimedia. He continues to be active within the art music scene as well, and has recorded and conducted his music with orchestras in Seattle, Australia, Sweden, Prague, Budapest, Bratislava and at Abbey Road in London. His music spans and often fuses many styles, from contemporary orchestral to electro-pop.
He currently resides in Los Angeles with his lovely wife Emily and works out of his state of the art studio facilities in Hollywood.
Robert is the recipient of numerous national and international composition awards from institutions including: Midwest Composers Symposium, ASCAP/Morton Gould Young Composer Awards, ISCM Cultural Foundation of Warsaw, Deutscher Akademischer Austauschungdienst Bureau, Berklee College of Music, Polish National Radio Orchestra, ASCAP PLU$ awards, and Society of Composers, Inc.