KUSC’s Brian Lauritzen and Terence Blanchard

Hit play below to listen to our extended interview with Terence Blanchard.

Terence Blanchard’s Oscar-nominated score for Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods was always going to be big. They felt the 96-piece orchestra was necessary to tell the emotional story of friends who had served together in Vietnam returning to the country years later to find the remains of their squad leader – and the cache of gold they buried there.

Blanchard has worked with Spike Lee on 25 films and documentaries, dating back to Mo Better Blues, and as a jazz trumpeter, has learned his skills along the way. This is his second Oscar nomination; his first was for BlacKkKlansman, Lee’s last feature, from 2018.

He’s also an opera composer, and his work Fire Shut Up In My Bones (based on Charles M. Blow’s memoir) will make history when it opens the Metropolitan Opera’s season this September. It will mark the first time a Black composer’s opera has been staged there in its 138-year history.

"Da 5 Bloods" scoring session with Terence Blanchard and Spike Lee on Wednesday, October 30, 2019 at Sony Studios. Photo by Matt Sayles for Netflix @msayles www.mattsaylesphoto.com
© 2020 Netflix Inc. All rights Reserved. Photo by Matt Sayles

Want to hear from this year’s other Oscar-nominated composers? Listen to our extended interview with James Newton Howard and Emile Mosseri.