Krzysztof Penderecki, famed film composer, dies aged 86

Krzysztof Penderecki, the famed music composer who worked with the likes of Stanley Kubrick and David Lynch, has died aged 86.

The Polish composer also worked with Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and Portishead’s Beth Gibbons.

Krzysztof Penderecki

With a career spanning over six decades, Krzysztof Penderecki has contributed music to major pop culture behemoths The Shining and The Exorcist.

The composer’s death was announced by Andrzej Giza, the director of Penderecki’s organisation, the Ludwig van Beethoven Association. The prolific composer has produced a myriad of musical pieces, including four operas, eight symphonies, orchestral pieces, instrumental concertos, choral settings, along with countless chamber and instrumental works.

Although Penderecki is incredibly well known in the classical spheres, it is for his contributions to film that he is most fondly known. Some of his work includes Kubrick’s The Shining, Lynch’s Wild at Heart and Inland Empire, Lynch’s recent Twin Peaks: The Return and most infamously, The Exorcist.

Some of his countless awards include four Grammy Awards, the Commander’s Cross, the Prix Italia in both 1967 and 1968, the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta, and the Wolf Prize in Arts.

Penderecki is fondly remembered by Jonny Greenwood in a recent Twitter post, “What sad news to wake to. Penderecki was the greatest—a fiercely creative composer, and a gentle, warm-hearted man. My condolences to his family, and to Poland on this huge loss to the musical world.”

Listen to some of Penderecki’s iconic soundtrack music below: