JOHN KAEFER | composer

JOHN KAEFER is a composer for film, television, multimedia, and the concert stage. A trusted collaborator known for his imaginative musical voice and distinctive scores, John’s varied work is praised as “steely and hard edged” by The Los Angeles Times, “a kinetic tour de force, continually fascinating,” by The San Francisco Classical Voice, and “vividly scored” by The New York Times.

John's work includes the score for Microsoft Studios and Remedy Entertainment's live-action series “Quantum Break”, developed exclusively for Xbox One. Hailed as a "masterpiece" by Gaming Trend, the revolutionary game blurs the line between episodic television and cinematic gameplay, integrating the two into one seamless, uniquely immersive experience. It is currently the #1 best-selling Microsoft Studios release to date.

Recent television credits include the original drama series “Sequestered” on Crackle (Sony Pictures Television) and "Making Moves" on Fullscreen, as well as the Main Theme and Thematic Music packages for ABC's “Good Morning America”, “20/20”, "Focus Earth" (with Bob Woodruff), and “Would You Fall For That”. John's music is widely featured in popular series on NBC, ABC, FOX, CBS, and The Documentary Channel, as well as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon, among others.

Recent film credits include "Party Boat" (Sony Pictures and Crackle), "Night Sweats" (Witness Films), director S.J. Main's "Reconnected" and "Requiescat", “Pandora’s Box” (starring Joe Mantegna/Frances Fisher), and music for the Warner Brothers Picture's feature “Mama’s Boy” (starring Diane Keaton). Additionally John has scored the feature documentaries "Silence Patton", “A Polite Bribe” (Nexus Media), and the 3-Part series “Dance School: Juilliard”.

John has composed national advertising and sonic branding campaigns for a diverse range of clients, including Mercedes, Ford, Hewlett-Packard, Comcast, LG, ABC, Simmons, Pfizer, and Marriott, as well as the UN's World Food Programme "Stop Hunger, Start Peace" campaign (voiceover by Liam Neeson). He also recently created three commissioned cinematic soundtrack albums for Discovery Music Source.

As a composer for the concert stage, John has enjoyed performances worldwide at major venues including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York, Wigmore Hall in London, and La Schola Cantorum in Paris. His work is programmed frequently by leading musicians and ensembles, including The Pacific Symphony, Eighth Blackbird, the Aspen Music Festival Contemporary Ensemble, The Hollywood Chamber Orchestra, The Juilliard Orchestra, Symphony In C (Haddonfield Symphony), The New York Youth Symphony, the Chamber Symphony of New Jersey, The Yale Philharmonia, and others.

John recently conducted the Hollywood Chamber Orchestra in the world premiere of his "States Of Motion", a three movement concerto for piano and string orchestra, featuring pianist Molly Morkoski. Other recent commissions include a viola and laptop piece for Jessica Meyer (premiered at Spectrum in New York) and a violin and piano work for violinist Cyrus Beroukhim (premiered at Music On Madison in New York).

John has received awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the ASCAP Foundation, BMI (concert music and TV/film), Meet The Composer, the Yaddo Corporation, the American Composers Forum, the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, and the Barlow Endowment, among others. He serves on the Board Of Advisors for Composers Now and is a judge/advisor for the BMI Foundation Pete Carpenter Fellowship.

John earned his Doctorate from The Juilliard School. He also holds degrees in composition from Yale University (MM) and the Eastman School of Music (BM). He currently teaches film scoring composition at New York University.

John is represented by Evolution Music Partners in Los Angeles.

LISTEN | Music Reels

Press PLAY BUTTON to listen. TOP: film & television; BOTTOM: concert music

Film Credits (selected)

Night Sweats | Witness Films
Director: Andrew Lyman-Clarke
Producers: Andrew Lyman-Clarke, Seth Panman
Starring: Carly Faucett, John Wesley Shipp, Brett Azar

Mama’s Boy (Additional Music) | Warner Brothers Pictures
Director: Tim Hamilton
Producers: Heidi Santelli, Steve Carr, Ravi D. Mehta
Starring: Diane Keaton, Jeff Daniels

Silence Patton (Documentary) | Nexus Media
Director: Robert Orlando
Producers: Mark Joseph, Brian McDonald, John Sullivan
Starring: Leland Prater, Debbi Tucker, Ricky Aynes

Reconnected (Short)| Tica Productions
Director: S.J. Main
Producers: Derek Classen, S.J. Main
Starring: Barbara Bain, Kerry O'Malley, Robert Kerbeck, Bobby Reed

Pandora’s Box (Short) | Back Pocket Productions
Director: Thomas G. Waites
Producer: Gila Zalon
Starring: Joe Mantegna, Frances Fisher, Mitchell Greenberg

Requiescat (Short)| Tica Productions
Director: S.J. Main
Producers: Derek Classen, S.J. Main
Sound: Paula Fairfield
Starring: Adrian Favela, Laura Ceron, William McNamara, Mia Xitlali

A Polite Bribe (Documentary) | Nexus Media
Director: Robert Orlando
Producers: Brian McDonald, Margo Cincotta, Ted Deutsch
Starring: Paul Achtemeieir, Dominick Crossan, Bart D. Ehrman

Jonas Brothers 3D Concert Experience (Additional Music) | Walt Disney Pictures
Director: Bruce Hendricks
Producers: Phil McIntyre, Arthur F. Repola, Alan Sacks
Starring: Kevin Jonas, Joe Jonas, Nick Jonas

The Kidnapping Of A Fish (Theme Music) | That Storm Films
Director: Phillip Ramos
Producers: John D. Day
Starring: Stephen Friedrich, Theodora Miranne

Lily Of The Feast (Short)
Director: Federico Castelluccio
Producers: TJ Sansone, Tyagi Schwartz
Starring: John Bianco, Federico Castelluccio, Damien Di Paola

Dance School: Juilliard (Documentary) | Eye Opener Productions
Director: Carlos Chacon, Elyse Sara

Forget Me Not (Short) | YMC Films
Director: Federico Castelluccio
Producers: Yvonne Maria Schäfer
Starring: Yvonne Maria Schäfer, Peter Greene, Federico Castelluccio

The Rise And Fall | Nash Productions
Director: Nash Bhatt
Producers: Nash Bhatt
Starring: Tony Black, Omar Alcaraz, Nash Bhatt

They Say Its Wonderful | Slade Productions
Director: Mitchell Kase
Producer: Mitchell Kase
Starring: William Stone Mahoney, Jeannine Moore

Room Service (Short, Additional Music) | Silver Hill Entertainment
Director: Kevin Castro
Producers: Mark Andrews, Jeremy Becker, Chris Bunker
Starring: Howie Mandel, Brandy Grace, Matthew Jaeger

Television & Interactive (selected)

Party Boat (TV Film) | Sony Pictures & Crackle
Director: Dylan Kidd
Producers: Douglas Banker, Jaime Burke, Amy Kim, Alex Garinger
Starring: Brett Davern, Demetrius Bridges, Katie Leclerc

Quantum Break | Remedy Entertainment & Microsoft Studios
TV Series Director: Ben Ketai
TV Series Producer: Jaime Burke, Amy Kim, Sean O'Connor
Game Director: Sam Lake
Game Producers: Remedy Entertainment
Platform: Xbox One and PC
Starring: Shawn Ashmore, Aidan Gillen, Dominic Monaghan, Lance Reddick
Score for live-action TV series within the game.

Sequestered | Sony Pictures Television & Crackle
Director: Kevin Tancharoen, Shawn Ku
Producers: Vahan Paretchan, Barry M. Schkolnick, Jaime Burke
Starring: Jesse Bradford, Darri Ingolfsson, Summer Glau

Making Moves | Fullscreen
Director: John Swetnam
Producers: Benjamin J. Murphy, Christopher Scott
Starring: Megan Batoon, Patrick Cook, Dexter Darden

Good Morning America (2007-2014) | ABC
Producers: Carole Leigh Podell, Michelle Major, Sarah Ruth
Starring: Lara Spencer, Ginger Zee

20/20 (2009-Present) | ABC
Producers: David Sloan, Joseph Diaz
Starring: Elizabeth Vargas, Barbara Walters, Chris Cuomo

Monday Mornings (Additional Music) | TNT
Producers: Bill D’Elia, Sanjay Gupta, David E. Kelley
Starring: Ving Rhames, Jamie Bamber, Jennifer Finnigan

Would You Fall For That? | ABC
Producers: Mark Edlitz, Harrison Greenbaum
Starring: Brian Distance, Hassin Godling

Discovery Music Source | Various Networks

Focus Earth With Bob Woodruff (Theme Music) | Discovery Channel & ABC News
Producers: John Green, Timothy Kuryak, Vinnie Malhotra

Dance School: Julliard | The Documentary Channel
Director: Carlos Chacon, Elyse Sara

TV, Add'tl Music Credits (selected)

Shark Tank | ABC
America’s Got Talent | NBC
The Celebrity Apprentice | NBC
The View | ABC
The Biggest Loser | NBC
Primetime: What Would You Do | ABC
There Goes The Neighborhood | CBS
Great American Road Trip | NBC
Here Come The Newlyweds | ABC
Who Do You Think You Are | NBC

Advertising (selected campaigns)

UN's World Food Programme Pfizer
National Geographic (promos)
ABC Network (promos)

Concert Music (selected)

States Of Motion (concerto for piano and strings)
Premiered by the Hollywood Chamber Orchestra and Molly Morkoski (piano)

MOSAIC (for large orchestra)
Premiered at Carnegie Hall. Pacific Symphony; NY Youth Symphony

Revolutions Per Minute (for large orchestra)
The Haddonfield Symphony

FRACTURE (for large orchestra)
Yale Philharmonica; Julliard Orchestra

Paths Of Movement (for violin and piano)
Cyrus Beroukhim, violin; Jesse Mills, violin

Nocturne: Evening Fire (for solo piano)
Molly Morkoski, piano

Just Out Of Reach (for viola and laptop)
Jessica Meyer, viola

Psalm 27 (for baritone, chorus, and chamber orchestra)
Chamber Symphony Of NJ/Summit Chorale

Time Capsule I (for solo piano)
Donald Dolan; Blair McMillen

Concerto for Viola and Chamber Orchestra
Lawrence Power, viola

Silhouettes (for flute, violin, and viola)
Les Amis Musicalles

THANATOS (for percussion quartet)
Eastman Percussion Ensemble

Awards & Recognitions (selected)

The Academy Of Arts And Letters, Charles Ives Scholarship
BMI Foundation, Pete Carpenter Fellowship Award and SCA Award
ASCAP Foundation, Morton Gould Composer Award
The Barlow Foundation
Meet The Composer
The American Music Center
Yaddo Arts Colony
Panelist/Advisor to Mike Post for the BMI Foundation Pete Carpenter Fellowship (2007-2010)
Director, BMI Foundation Pete Carpenter Fellowship
ComposersNow, Board Of Advisors
Society Of Composers and Lyricists (SCL), Mentor
The American Composers Orchestra, Guest Composer, Film Music Factory Program


The Juilliard School (2001-06)
Doctor Of Musical Arts in Composition; C.V. Starr Doctoral Fellow; Cartwright Scholarship; Henry Mancini Fellowship

Yale University (1999-2001)
Master Of Music in Composition; John D. Jackson Scholar

Eastman School Of Music (1995-99)
Bachelor Of Music in Composition; G. Eastman Scholar

Aspen Music Festival, Oregon Bach Festival, La Schola Cantorum (Paris)


Issue with form? Direct to John:


Evolution Music Partners
Seth Kaplan & Christine Russell
1680 Vine Street, Hollywood, CA
Tel: 323.790.0525

Studios in New York and Los Angeles