Words by Misha Fabian
Photos courtesy of Jaimie Pangan’s Social Media
Meet Jaimie Pangan, a 26-year-old composer making waves in the international music scene for her musical composition. Pangan wrote a piece entitled “Farewell” as her final project for her master’s degree for Music in Screen Scoring which she took up at the University of Southern California. The piece, she says, was inspired by the death scene of Dumbledore from Harry Potter and as such, is heavy with emotion. In fact, the piece was so moving that it earned Pangan a nomination for a Hollywood Music in Media Award, which will be held in November this year.
Pangan grew up learning how to play the violin, having her first formal lessons at age 6. While she says she found it interesting, she initially hated playing the violin because of how complex the instrument was. She only truly began to get into music and realize how much she loved it when she entered high school. It was during these years that she decided that she would like to have a career in music. However, while Pangan does admit that she did want to pursue music, it was not the first career path she took up She earned her bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and spent a few years working at IBM.
Her stint at IBM did not stunt her passion for music but rather, while at IBM, she created an organization for music within the company to create a pool of performers for all interested musicians. She even won an award within IBM for being part of a team that conceptualized an AI that generated hit songs based off of previous hits. She also did freelance music gigs on the side.
Pangan slowly transitioned into film scoring in 2015 after hearing from a friend about Max Richter, a film composer. She was able to receive a scholarship to New York University’s summer program for film scoring and decided to pursue graduate studies after that. She got accepted in 4 of the United States’ best schools for music: Berklee College of Music, New York University, California Institute of the Arts and the University of Southern California. She then decided to take up film scoring at the University of Southern California.
As a student at the University of Southern California, she did work composing music for films from all over the globe. She began to garner awards at various film festivals- getting a nomination for Best Soundtrack/Music for her work on “The Art of Flawsome” at the Oniros Film Festival. Her compositions were also screened at the Cannes Film Festival and she earned bronze and silver awards at the Virgin Spring Cinefest. Now, she has been nominated for a Hollywood Music in Media Award and she’s working her way to scoring more pieces for more films in the future.
Jaimie Pangan is a shining example of what it means to pursue one’s passion- and now she’s making waves with the gifts she’s been given. We definitely cannot wait to hear more from her in the future and see what else she has in store for us!
Follow her on her social media!
Check out her music here!