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Portrait
Khaled Mouzanar

Khaled Mouzanar, 38, a Lebanese musician, composer and producer, is the well-known author of several movie soundtracks, including Beirut aftershave (which won the Cesar for Best Short Film at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival), Caramel (Best Soundtrack - UCMF Cannes 2008), or Where do we go now? (Best Film at the International Film Festival in Stockholm 2011).

But Khaled Mouzanar is also the composer and interpreter of French songs. His first solo album, Dans les Champs arides, was released in 2008 by Naive, where he performed his own songs, encountered a true success among connoisseurs. In his studio in Achrafieh, close from his home, Khaled Mouzanar is now working on the creation of his new album, to be released soon.

He has composed also music scores for several films, including ‘Beirut After Shave’ and ‘Where Do We Go Now?’. His work is rooted in various music genres, ranging from Classical and Jazz music to Mediterranean and Oriental melodies. His compositions also flirt with Brazilian Choro and Argentinean Tango (through a thorough study of Astor Piazzolla).

Mouzanar began experimenting with music at a very young age. His mother (both a guitarist and a singer) who has lived in Mexico passed onto him a passion for South American music. However, the civil war in Lebanon, which lasted for two decades, stood in the way of his pursuing piano studies until he turned 18. From that point onwards, Mouzanar started studying under the astute guidance of Boghos Gelalian – an Armenian-Lebanese composer. "I learned the rules of music composition by analyzing a Cantate of Johann Sebastian Bach every week,” stated Mouzanar.

In the year 2000, he established – in collaboration with Zeid Hamdan – his first label ‘Mooz Records’ through which he produced the majority of Beirut’s underground music scene. Groups such as Soap Kills, Kitaa Beirut, The New Government and RGB were among these productions.

He then established his own recording studio ‘The Abeyrut Studio’ through which he still records his own work using vintage analog methods and several rare and vintage instruments gathered from all over the world.
While still at law school, Mouzanar used to compose music scores for friends who were studying cinema at the neighboring campus. He also composed music for advertisements, which garnered success in the Near East, Asia and Africa.

One of his first professional experiences in cinema actually took place in 2005 with ‘Beirut After Shave’ – a short film directed by Hany Tamba. The film won in France the Cesar Award for Best Short Film in 2006. This was a tremendous opportunity for him to demonstrate his talents and capabilities as a composer of film scores.

Though Mouzanar derives inspiration for his music from various sources, the script of a given film remains the most important in this regard: “Working with the script gives more freedom to my imagination compared to images or scenes from a movie.”

In 2007, and while signing with the French independent record company Naïve for a solo album, Mouzanar composed the score for ‘Caramel’ – a feature film directed by Nadine Labaki whom he later married. In 2008, he won the UCMF Award for Best Music for the soundtrack of ‘Caramel’ at the Cannes Film Festival.

That same year, Mouzanar recorded his first solo album (in French) entitled ‘Les Champs Arides’. The album was co-produced with the English producer Ian Caple. It includes a duet with French singer Barbara Carlotti. ‘L’Express’ had this to say about the album, “The new thrilling promise of French music.”

In 2009, he composed the music for the opening ceremony of the 'VIe Jeux de la Francophonie', which was viewed by 60 million spectators all over the world. French choreographer Daniel Charpentier directed the show.

In 2010, while writing for different artists such as Natasha Atlas, Mouzanar composed the music score for the film ‘Where do we go now?’ directed by Nadine Labaki, for which he won the award for Best Music at the 2011 Stockholm Film Festival.

Discography:

2005: Beyrouth Après Rasage – After Shave (OST) (Cesar for best Short Movie 2006)

2007: Caramel (OST) (Best Music Award – UCMF in Cannes 2008)

2008: Les Champs Arides (Song-writer)

2009: Une Chanson Dans la Tête (OST)

2011: Where Do We Go Now? (OST) (Best Music Award 2011 – Stockholm International Film Festival)

 

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2012-12-24

Khaled Mouzanar, 38, a Lebanese musician, composer and producer, is the well-known author of several movie soundtracks, including Beirut aftershave (which won the Cesar for Best Short Film at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival), Caramel (Best Soundtrack - UCMF Cannes 2008), or Where do we go now? (Best Film at the International Film Festival in Stockholm 2011).

But Khaled Mouzanar is also the composer and interpreter of French songs. His first solo album, Dans les Champs arides, was released in 2008 by Naive, where he performed his own songs, encountered a true success among connoisseurs. In his studio in Achrafieh, close from his home, Khaled Mouzanar is now working on the creation of his new album, to be released soon.

He has composed also music scores for several films, including ‘Beirut After Shave’ and ‘Where Do We Go Now?’. His work is rooted in various music genres, ranging from Classical and Jazz music to Mediterranean and Oriental melodies. His compositions also flirt with Brazilian Choro and Argentinean Tango (through a thorough study of Astor Piazzolla).

Mouzanar began experimenting with music at a very young age. His mother (both a guitarist and a singer) who has lived in Mexico passed onto him a passion for South American music. However, the civil war in Lebanon, which lasted for two decades, stood in the way of his pursuing piano studies until he turned 18. From that point onwards, Mouzanar started studying under the astute guidance of Boghos Gelalian – an Armenian-Lebanese composer. "I learned the rules of music composition by analyzing a Cantate of Johann Sebastian Bach every week,” stated Mouzanar.

In the year 2000, he established – in collaboration with Zeid Hamdan – his first label ‘Mooz Records’ through which he produced the majority of Beirut’s underground music scene. Groups such as Soap Kills, Kitaa Beirut, The New Government and RGB were among these productions.

He then established his own recording studio ‘The Abeyrut Studio’ through which he still records his own work using vintage analog methods and several rare and vintage instruments gathered from all over the world.
While still at law school, Mouzanar used to compose music scores for friends who were studying cinema at the neighboring campus. He also composed music for advertisements, which garnered success in the Near East, Asia and Africa.

One of his first professional experiences in cinema actually took place in 2005 with ‘Beirut After Shave’ – a short film directed by Hany Tamba. The film won in France the Cesar Award for Best Short Film in 2006. This was a tremendous opportunity for him to demonstrate his talents and capabilities as a composer of film scores.

Though Mouzanar derives inspiration for his music from various sources, the script of a given film remains the most important in this regard: “Working with the script gives more freedom to my imagination compared to images or scenes from a movie.”

In 2007, and while signing with the French independent record company Naïve for a solo album, Mouzanar composed the score for ‘Caramel’ – a feature film directed by Nadine Labaki whom he later married. In 2008, he won the UCMF Award for Best Music for the soundtrack of ‘Caramel’ at the Cannes Film Festival.

That same year, Mouzanar recorded his first solo album (in French) entitled ‘Les Champs Arides’. The album was co-produced with the English producer Ian Caple. It includes a duet with French singer Barbara Carlotti. ‘L’Express’ had this to say about the album, “The new thrilling promise of French music.”

In 2009, he composed the music for the opening ceremony of the 'VIe Jeux de la Francophonie', which was viewed by 60 million spectators all over the world. French choreographer Daniel Charpentier directed the show.

In 2010, while writing for different artists such as Natasha Atlas, Mouzanar composed the music score for the film ‘Where do we go now?’ directed by Nadine Labaki, for which he won the award for Best Music at the 2011 Stockholm Film Festival.

Discography:

2005: Beyrouth Après Rasage – After Shave (OST) (Cesar for best Short Movie 2006)

2007: Caramel (OST) (Best Music Award – UCMF in Cannes 2008)

2008: Les Champs Arides (Song-writer)

2009: Une Chanson Dans la Tête (OST)

2011: Where Do We Go Now? (OST) (Best Music Award 2011 – Stockholm International Film Festival)

 

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