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Basil Poledouris

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Basil Poledouris

Years active

Musical composer

Basil Poledouris RIP Basil Poledouris Cello amp Oboe Present

August 21, 1945Kansas City, Missouri, USA (

November 8, 2006, Los Angeles, California, United States

Bobbie Poledouris (m. 1969–2004)


Composer, conductor

Conan the barbarian suite basil poledouris conan der barbar

Basil Konstantine Poledouris (August 21, 1945 – November 8, 2006) was a Greek-American music composer who concentrated on the scores for films and television shows. Poledouris won the Emmy Award for Best Musical Score for work on part four of the TV miniseries Lonesome Dove in 1989. He is best known for scores such as Conan the Barbarian (1982), RoboCop (1987), Spellbinder (1988), Red Dawn (1984), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Free Willy (1993) and Starship Troopers (1997).


Basil Poledouris basilpoledouris08jpg

Robocop music video basil poledouris

Life and career

Born in Kansas City, Missouri, he credited two influences with guiding him towards music: the first was composer Miklós Rózsa; the second his own Greek Orthodox heritage. Poledouris was raised in the Church, and he used to sit in services enthralled by the choir's sound. At the age of seven, Poledouris began piano lessons, and after high school graduation, he enrolled at the University of Southern California to study both filmmaking and music. Several short films to which he contributed are still kept in the university's archives. At USC, Poledouris met movie directors John Milius and Randal Kleiser, with whom he would later collaborate as a music composer. He appeared as a background extra in several episodes of Star Trek: The Original Series. In 1985, Poledouris wrote the music for Paul Verhoeven's Flesh & Blood, establishing a durable collaboration.

Basil Poledouris Basil Poledouris Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Poledouris became renowned for his powerfully epic style of orchestral composition and his intricate thematic designs. He scored the soundtrack for The Blue Lagoon (1980; dir: Kleiser); Conan the Barbarian (1982; dir: Milius); Conan the Destroyer (1984); Red Dawn (1984; dir: Milius), Iron Eagle (1986); RoboCop (1987; dir: Verhoeven); The Hunt for Red October (1990); Quigley Down Under (1990 Simon Wincer); Free Willy (1993) and its first sequel Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home (1995); Starship Troopers (1997; dir: Verhoeven); and For Love of the Game (1999).

Poledouris's studio, "Blowtorch Flats", is located in Venice, California, and is a professional mixing facility specializing in film and media production.

Poledouris married his wife Bobbie in 1969; they had two daughters, Zoë and Alexis. His elder daughter, Zoë Poledouris, is an actress and film composer, who occasionally collaborated with her father in composing film soundtracks.

Poledouris's score for Conan the Barbarian is considered by many to be one of the finest examples of motion picture scoring ever written.

In 1996, Poledouris composed "The Tradition of the Games" for the Atlanta Olympics opening ceremony that accompanied the memorable dance tribute to the athletes and goddesses of victory of the ancient Greek Olympics using silhouette imagery.

Poledouris spent the last four years of his life residing on Vashon Island, in Washington state. He died on November 8, 2006, in Los Angeles, California, aged 61, from cancer.


  • Winner Best Score for Miniseries – Emmy Awards (Lonesome Dove)
  • Nominee Best Score – Saturn Awards (Conan the Barbarian)
  • Winner Special Recognition Music Award – BMI Film & TV Awards (Olympic Tribute for "The Tradition of the Games")
  • Winner Film Music Award – BMI Awards (Free Willy)
  • Winner Film Music Award – BMI Awards (The Hunt for Red October)
  • Winner TV Music Award – BMI Awards (Lonesome Dove)
  • Winner Film Music Award – BMI Awards (RoboCop)
  • Mini-series

  • Amerika (14-hour mini-series) (1987)
  • Lonesome Dove (8-hour mini-series) (1989) (Emmy Award Winner for Best Score)
  • Zoya (4-hour mini-series) (theme) (1995)
  • Television

  • Congratulations, It's a Boy (1971)
  • Three for the Road (1974)
  • Dolphin (1979)
  • A Whale for the Killing (1981)
  • Fire on the Mountain (1981)
  • Amazons (1984)
  • Single Women, Single Bars (1984)
  • The House of God (1984)
  • Alfred Hitchcock Presents (pilot) (1985)
  • Misfits of Science (pilot) (1986)
  • The Twilight Zone: "Profile in Silver" (1986)
  • The Twilight Zone: "Monsters" (1986)
  • The Twilight Zone: "A Message from Charity" (1986)
  • Prison for Children (1987)
  • Island Sons (pilot) (1987)
  • Intrigue (pilot) (1988)
  • L.A. Takedown (pilot) (1989)
  • Nasty Boys (pilot) (1989)
  • Nasty Boys: "Lone Justice" (1990)
  • Life & Times of Ned Blessing (pilot) (1991)
  • If These Walls Could Talk II (2000)
  • Love and Treason (2001)
  • Other works

  • 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games (Opening Ceremony)
  • Conan Sword & Sorcery Spectacular (Universal Studios' live stage show)
  • American Journeys (A Circle-Vision 360° film at Disneyland and Magic Kingdom)
  • Flyers (IMAX)
  • Behold Hawaii (IMAX)
  • References

    Basil Poledouris Wikipedia