Effective period / Period of releases: 1998 - 2015French composer , Armand Amar spent his childhood in Morocco. Imbued with the sounds of instruments considered exotic at the time, the pull of that “world apart” exercised by extra-European music soon fascinated him. Autodidact, he was constantly searching for physical experiences in the early years of his musical apprenticeship, whereas in the following years his search became a commitment; he learned to play tablas, discovered the zarb and congas, and studied under various masters of traditional and classical music in India, Iran and Cuba.
Armand’s discovery of dance in 1976, following an invitation from South African choreographer and trained anthropologist Peter Goss was another decisive moment. Suddenly what he’d been looking for was right there in front of him – a direct relationship to music, the power to improvise freely, the advantages of authentic, on-the-spot exchanges. Since then he has worked with various choreographers from the different branches of contemporary dance (Marie-Claude Pietragalla, Carolyn Carlsson, Francesca Lattuada, etc.). Two challenging new ventures broadened his scope even further: his involvement in Patrice Chéreau’s actors’ school and his teaching at the Conservatoire National Supérieur [Higher National Music School] focussed on the relationship between music and dance.
The musical and spiritual influences at play show through in his film scores, such as that of Costa-Gavras’ Amen., nominated for the French César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2003, and The Axe by the same director (2005), The Trail by Eric Valli (2005), Radu Mihaileanu’s Live and Become (nominated for the French César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2006), Rachid Bouchareb’s Days of Glory (Indigènes, nominated for the French César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2007), Julie Gavras’ Blame it on Fidel (all 2006), Laurent Herbiet’s Mon Colonel, Marco Carmel’s Comme ton père, Gilles de Maistre’s The First Cry (all 2007), Gilles Legrand’s La jeune fille et les loups, Diane Kurys’ Sagan (2008).
He is currently working on the music for Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s first full-length film, Home, produced by Luc Besson, Costa-Gavras’ next feature film, Eden est à l’Ouest and Radu Mihaileanu’s Le concert.
His record label naïve recently devoted a first retrospective to his film scores in the form of a double album.
In 1994 in partnership with his friend Alain Weber, he founded the record label Long Distance for traditional, world and classical music; it now boasts more than 60 titles. The CDs of his own music are released by naïve, Long Distance, and Universal.
Nominations and awards:
Amen by Costa-Gavras: nominated for the César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2003
Plus loin by Michelin, directed by Eric Valli: Special SACEM Award 2003 for the best original music
Live and Become by Radu Mihaileanu: nominated for the César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2006
Days of Glory by Rachid Bouchareb: nominated for the César/Best Soundtrack of the Year Award 2007