Balfe – His Dark Materials Theme Sequence

This sequence is based on the melody from the theme for “His Dark Materials”


Lorne Balfe is a Scottish-born film composer who has made a name for himself by writing the scores to Mission Impossible: Fallout and the Lego Batman Movie. In addition to his solo compositions, he has worked on a number of projects with Hans Zimmer. Balfe contributed to the scores of the Dark Knight movies, Sherlock Holmes, Inception, the Da Vinci Code, and the Pirates of the Caribbean. He has also written music for the smash hit video game series, Call of Duty.

When researching Mr Balfe before writing this sequence, I was impressed to find that he shares the piano scores to many of the songs from “His Dark Materials” for free on twitter.

His Dark Materials

Philip Pullman’s three-book series following the lives of young Lyra Belacqua and Will Tuner as they explore parallel universes has earned a number of awards and is highly ranked on every “best books list” the internet has to offer.

After a disappointing transition to the silver screen in 2007 as The Golden Compass, the new His Dark Materials show on HBO is doing a commendable job of adapting Pullman’s masterpiece to a show version.

The protagonist of the series, Lyra Belacqua, is a brave, curious, and crafty young girl of about 13 years old. She has the epic destiny of bringing balance to life in the universe, but must do so without being aware of what she is doing.


Balfe’s theme does a great job of capturing Lyra’s struggles in the first two bars, and her triumph in the second two bars.

Strive for a rich singing sound to represent her bravery. Create your smoothest slur connections to show her craftiness, and channel her curiosity as you explore your limits with this sequence.

Have any questions? Comment below, or leave a comment on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

Happy Practicing!

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2 thoughts on “Balfe – His Dark Materials Theme Sequence

  1. Ken Watson

    Hello, William. Thank you for this informative article. I am a composer/arranger who has been asked for an arrangement of three pieces from “His Dark Materials” for clarinet quartet. I can easily create what the commissioner wants, but I need to obtain copyright license. What publisher holds the copyright for Lorne Balfe’s music, especially “His Dark Materials”?

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