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Zaza, Paul

Origin: Toronto, Ontario, 🇨🇦

Canadian composer and songwriter Paul Zaza started out as a classically trained pianist. Zaza has a degree from the prestigious Toronto Conservatory of Music. Moreover, Paul played bass in a Canadian touring company production of the hit musical "Hair" and toured with the The 5th Dimension in the 1970s. Zaza first began doing film scores in the late '70s. He's worked in a diverse of array of genres that include comedy (Hog Wild (1980), Gas (1981)), drama (Isaac Littlefeathers (1984), which was nominated for a Genie Award for Best Music Score), thriller (American Nightmare (1983), _Blindside_), action (Bullies (1986), No Contest (1995)), and science fiction (The Vindicator (1986), The Pink Chiquitas (1986)). Paul frequently collaborated with director Robert Clark: Among the Clark movies he composed the scores for are Murder by Decree (1979) (Zaza won the Genie Award for Best Music Score for his terrific score on this particular picture), the first two uproariously raunchy "Porky's" flicks, the delightful A Christmas Story (1983), Turk 182 (1985), From the Hip (1987), and both Baby Geniuses (1999) films. In addition, Zaza has supplied chillingly effective scores throughout the years for such horror features as Prom Night (1980) (he also composed the music for the sequels), Ghost Keeper (1981), My Bloody Valentine (1981) (this is perhaps Paul's single most spooky and melodic horror film score to date), Curtains (1983), The Brain (1988), Popcorn (1991), The Club (1994), and The Dark (1993). Paul also did the theme music for the long-running Nickelodeon children's TV series Mr. Wizard's World (1983). Besides a Genie Award, Zaza has received fourteen SOCAN Awards as well. Paul Zaza has his own state-of-the-art studio called Zaza Sound Productions Ltd.

Paul Zaza was born in 1952. At the age of four he commenced piano lessons at the Royal Conservatory of Music in his native Toronto, which he attended until graduation. However it was not as a pianist but as a bass player in stage production of 'Hair' in Toronto that he was noticed by the band Fifth Dimension with whom he subsequently toured. His entry into cinema came when he was running his own recording studio. The director Les Rose was looking for a composer to score one of his films and, since the existing score was not to his satisfaction, he engaged Paul, working with him on three further movies. Since then he there have been over a hundred and fifty credits, often for horror films and particularly in collaboration with Bob Clark, for whose Sherlock Holmes story 'Murder by Decree' gained him a Genie, the Canadian equivalent of an Oscar in the first year of the Canadian Academy of Cinema and Television's existence.


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