Remembrances of Normand Corbeil

We are saddened at the loss of an important musical voice and friend in our community. Normand Corbeil passed away earlier this week after a 6 month battle with pancreatic cancer. Normand was a vastly talented and prolific composer capable of deep and powerful expression.

In addition to many game, film and TV scores, he composed the scores for Paris developer Quantic Dream's Indigo Prophecy and Heavy Rain, the latter soundtrack earning worldwide acclaim and both AIAS and BAFTA awards for Best Original Score in 2011. Normand was working on Quantic Dream's upcoming title, Beyond: Two Souls up until his death.

Normand was born on April 6, 1956 in Montreal. Normand's longtime producer, recording and mixing engineer, Jonathan Allen recounted,
"Normand was one of the most musical and talented composers I've had the privilege to work with. The saddest part of him passing away so early is the thought of the wonderful music we'll never hear."

London orchestra contractor, Isobel Griffiths remarked, "Normand was a lovely, kind and sincere man who was all about the music, he will be missed by everyone who worked with him." Quantic Dream Founder and co-CEO, David Cage, said,"Normand was much more than a talented composer. He was one of the nicest persons I ever worked with. We will miss him a lot. He left us his music and the memory of a wonderful man. Bon vent, Normand."


There are more quotes (after the jump here) about Normand and his music...

"Normand was much more than a talented composer. He was one of the nicest persons I ever worked with. I remember two moments in particular out of the many years we worked together: recording at Abbey Road with a symphonic orchestra for the soundtrack of Heavy Rain was definitely a great one. He conducted his music and I was listening seated on a chair in a corner of the studio, feeling the strong emotion emanating from his music. I felt incredibly lucky to be there, to have his music in my game and just to be fortunate enough to work with this guy. The second moment I will remember is when he won a BAFTA for Heavy Rain. I saw him being truly, deeply happy, proud, and everybody at the studio and at Sony were just as happy for him as he was. We all felt he totally deserved this award for his amazing contribution. I thought he would win many more awards. Cancer decided otherwise. I had the chance to meet Normand and to work with him. We will miss him a lot. He left us his music and the memory of a wonderful man. Bon vent, Normand."

- David Cage, Founder and co-CEO, Quantic Dream, Paris

“Normand was as gifted as he was forthcoming and bighearted, a rare blend in today’s world. Saying he was hard working is an understatement: he strove for perfection in his music in his constant quest to conveying true and subtle emotions at any given moment. He was working out of Montreal while our studio is in Paris but he always made sure that distance would never be a burden. Always positive, he simply gave everything to the projects and the team. Through his friendliness, he became an integral part of Quantic Dream, a dear friend to all those who had the privilege of working with him. Sharing tears with him over his BAFTA award win will remain my fondest memory of him. We will miss him dearly.”

- Guillaume de Fondaumière, co-CEO, Executive Producer, Quantic Dream, Paris

"I was struck by the quiet passion and musicality of the man. He was thoughtful, generous and gentle. Extraordinarily committed (finessing his writing in his hotel till 4am the night before the record) and fabulously talented (I doubt I'll ever hear the like of the beautifully orchestrated cacophony of the confused tension cue from Heavy Rain).I was shocked when I learned of Normand's death and that's the mark of a quiet man who could so quickly leave such an indelible mark."

- Dan Bardino, Creative Services Manager, Sony PlayStation, London

"Working for Normand in the studio was always such a pleasure, the musicians loved him. He always conducted himself and was totally dedicated to ensuring every nuance of his music was absolutely perfect and as he had envisaged it . He agonized over his scores always finding more ways to make the music better and made it fun for everyone involved, he was always humourous and charming when he was working in the studio, nothing was too much trouble and he was so appreciative of the musicians' contribution. It really was a matter of a composer at work on the rostrum and the musicians really appreciated that dedication. Normand was a lovely, kind and sincere man who was all about the music, he will be missed by everyone who worked with him. Colette Barber, the studio bookings manageress at Abbey Road once said to me "I really like Normand, he is probably the nicest man who has ever worked at Abbey Road". Colette has worked at Abbey Road for over 25 years � I think that says it all. It's so sad to lose him but I'm so glad I knew him."

- Isobel Griffiths, Orchestra Contractor, Isobel Griffiths LTD, London

"Normand was one of the most musical and talented composers I've had the privilege to work with. He wrote music that welcomed the life musicians gave when they performed it and had the great gift to write beautifully crafted chamber music alongside large sweeping orchestral landscapes. Working together since 2005 we'd often discuss other music and he'd share projects which he wanted to do. The saddest part of him passing away so early is the thought of the wonderful music we'll never hear. Normand had the rare gift to have an individual musical voice and was a lovely and thoughtful man to work with. I'll miss him a lot."


- Jonathan Allen, Recording and Mixing Engineer, Abbey Road Studios, London

"Collaborating with Normand on the Heavy Rain scoring at Abbey Road was a very rewarding and enjoyable experience. Normand had a warm and thought provoking personality - freely expressing his convictions, but always in a humble and whimsical way. I especially enjoyed our extended courtyard wine and cigarette discussion with Isobel, Colette and Jonathan in which Normand asserted his views clearly but with an affectionate smile. He was a dedicated artist, clearly driving himself in the relentless pursuit of expressive depth and power. He so well deserved the many accolades and awards, including the AIAS and BAFTA awards for Best Original Score. A truly great composer and kind hearted person who will be greatly missed."

- Clint Bajakian, Senior Music Manager, Sony PlayStation, Foster City CA

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