Author Aaron Marks wrote, "Chance Thomas is a composer's composer. He is musically educated, technically astute and more passionate about music than just about anyone."
This combination of musical education, tech savvy and passion continues to drive a successful 20-year scoring career across video games, virtual reality, film and television. We'd like to share a few highlights with you...
Chance has been entrusted with prestigious titles and high-value entertainment properties again and again in his career. DOTA 2, James Cameron's Avatar, Peter Jackson's King Kong, The Hobbit, Star Wars, Monopoly, Dungeons & Dragons, Heroes of Might & Magic, Left Behind, X-Men and many more.
He has a knack for unravelling the unique DNA of each IP, conveyed in music that is both original and unmistakeably expressive of each. That ability continues to win the trust of stake holders and the delight of fans worldwide.
Lord of the Rings Online may be Chance's most widely admired work. Each of his compositions is based on years of personal research into the literature - painstakingly crafting instrumental palettes, vocal ranges, stylistic tendencies and emotional conjuring based on direct references/inferences scattered throughout the text. According to Game Developer Magazine, the result is a score, "...drawn from the very pen of Tolkien's writings, ringing of truth to anyone familiar with its pages."
His movie and TV scores include an Oscar™ winning film (The ChubbChubbs), an Emmy™ winning PSA (Rise Above the Blues), Emmy™ nominated TV movie (Lost Treasure Hunt) and music for popular shows like Pawn Stars, The Daily Show and America's Most Wanted. An extensive list of credits can be found on our CREDITS page.
Chance has also been an important innovator in video games. He spearheaded the design and implementation of one of the world's first successful adaptive music systems based on digital audio streams (1997). He pioneered new techniques for composing game music including ambient set matrices (1996) and interactive scoring maps (2001). He created one of the first live orchestral scores in gaming (Quest for Glory V) and produced one of the first commercially successful game music soundtracks in America (50,000+ units).
His work has been highlighted in the New York Times, USA TODAY, Business Week, Entertainment Weekly, Wired Magazine and many regional newspapers and publications. He has been honored by more than 40 industry awards and nominations, including half a dozen for MUSIC OF THE YEAR.
In the late 1990's Chance led a successful movement which brought game music into the Grammy Awards™. He helped found the Game Audio Network Guild and is a former Chair of the Music and Sound Peer Committees for the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences.
Chance has also held important positions at major entertainment studios. He worked as Franchise Music Director at Vivendi-Universal supervising all Lord of the Rings titles. He built audio studios, production pipelines, staffed an audio department and shipped half a dozen titles as Studio Audio Director for Electronic Arts. As Senior Music Producer for Sierra Entertainment, he led out with many innovations in game music design, music production and public awareness.
He currently serves on the Board of Directors for G.A.N.G. and on the Audio Advisory Board for the Game Developers Conference.
SPEAKING & EDUCATION
Chance is a popular guest lecturer at universities, colleges and professional conferences. He has presented guest lectures at Indiana University, Johns Hopkins University, Berklee College of Music, University of Southern California, University of Texas, Oklahoma City University, Brigham Young University, Full Sail University, Musicians Institute of Hollywood, and many more.
He has been a keynote speaker at GameSoundCon, the top-rated lecturer at GDC, a workshop instructor for High Voltage Seminars, a presenter at the Interactive Academy Awards and the inaugural speaker for Stadium Red's Masters Series.
In 2016, CRC Press published Chance's first university textbook, Composing Music For Games: The Art, Technology and Business of Video Game Scoring. It is a landmark book in game music education, praised by educators and students alike. Read more about it on our TEXTBOOK page.
Chance was instrumental in designing the curriculum for Musicians Institute's first Bachelor's degree program in music composition, Music Scoring for Visual Media. He has been an adjunct instructor and visiting artist at Oklahoma City University. He is a contributing author to several texts and sole author of published articles in professional trades. Chance holds a degree in music from Brigham Young University, cum laude.
SUPER NERDY PROJECT DETAILS
The videogame score for James Cameron's Avatar required more than four and a half hours of original music tracks. Chance completed the composition work in 72 days. The score was recorded in Hollywood, Seattle and Salt Lake City.
The ChubbChubbs animated short film had its theatrical run opening for Men In Black 2. It later found a DVD home on Surf's Up! Chance recorded the orchestral score in Salt Lake City, recorded the R&B song remakes in Los Angeles and Fresno (yes, Fresno), and supervised the sound effects. The ChubbChubbs dominated short film festivals and awards, ultimately winning an Oscar at the 75th Annual Academy Awards.
You can hear Chance's childhood love of science fiction and comics in his original music for Champions Online, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance, X-Men: The Official Game, Earth and Beyond, Unreal II and Robota: Reign of Machines. His super-hero themes, otherworldly soundscapes, and combat tracks trace their creative spirit to a youthful diet of The Avengers, Spider Man, Aqua Man, The Defenders, Star Trek and Star Wars.
The film music for Peter Jackson's King Kong wasn't even started by the time Chance had completed King Kong's video game score. There was lots of great press about the score, but Business Week summed it up best, "The soundtrack has been universally praised. All of Chance's music has been validated by Peter Jackson."
One of the early milestones of Chance's work on Lord of the Rings occurred when Vivendi-Universal posted mp3's of his music on a special website and logged over a million downloads from players and fans. That was back in the day when a million downloads still meant something!