IWC Schaffhausen has unveiled a suite of unique tracks composed by Academy Award-winner Hans Zimmer. The acclaimed film music composer took inspiration from the five new ceramic colors introduced by the Swiss luxury watch manufacturer as part of its new TOP GUN Pilot’s Watches collection. Zimmer himself conducted the debut performance of the suite at an exclusive event at the Théâtre du Léman in Geneva tonight, organized to mark the Watches and Wonders exhibition. Prior to the show at the Théâtre du Léman, Hans Zimmer met with Seven-Time Formula OneTM World Champion and IWC Brand Ambassador Lewis Hamilton.
Hans Zimmer has scored more than 200 projects across every medium and has been honoured with two Academy Awards®, three Golden Globes®, three Grammys®, an American Music Award, and a Tony® Award. Work highlights include the scores for Dune No Time to Die, Gladiator, The Thin Red Line, As Good as It Gets, Rain Man, The Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, Thelma and Louise, The Last Samurai, 12 Years A Slave, Blade Runner 2049 (co-scored with Benjamin Wallfisch) and Dunkirk, as well as recent film scores including Wonder Woman 1984, Ron Howard’s Hillbilly Elegy and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run. In 2019, Zimmer also scored the live-action remake of The Lion King, for which he received a Grammy® nomination for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media.
In what marks one of the first collaborations between a Swiss luxury watch manufacturer and a film music composer, IWC Schaffhausen and Zimmer have teamed up to bring a unique project to life: “The Sound of Color”. For the newly launched TOP GUN Pilot’s Watches collection, IWC’s creative specialists engineered five striking new ceramic colors and created timepieces in stunning, monochromatic designs. Zimmer then took these colors as the starting point for his musical composition, creating five pieces of music, one for each color: The Sound of Color – IWC Ceratanium®, The Sound of Color – IWC Mojave Desert, The Sound of Color – IWC Woodland, The Sound of Color – IWC Lake Tahoe and The Sound of Color – IWC Jet Black. The music adds a surprising and original new dimension to each, expressing each emotionally through sound.
“What I love about music is the playful element and the opportunity to try out things I have not done before,” explained Zimmer. “I enjoyed creating sounds with IWC because it was quite different from my work on films. Writing music is always about telling a story and taking people to new places, whether inspired by a moving picture or a color, and this was no different.”
“Sound is one of the most powerful tools to express emotion and create an atmosphere. As an architectural designer, I have learned to express my ideas visually. Hans’ powerful soundtracks have continuously inspired me and given me energy during countless hours of drawing and many at late night. Having the opportunity to work with Hans on translating “The Colors of Top Gun” into music is a dream come true. The soundscape will be instrumental in creating a unique atmosphere in which to showcase our watches to maximum effect,” explained Chris Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen.
AN ENGINEERING APPROACH TO CREATING MUSIC
The collaboration between IWC and Zimmer is founded on shared values. Just as IWC fosters an engineering approach to watchmaking, he uses a technology-driven approach to composing music. Cutting-edge technology enables him to push the boundaries and venture into unchartered territories of sound. In his studio in Santa Monica, California, he has assembled a unique system of synthesizers and samplers, allowing him to electronically compose and arrange his music without ever writing a single note. He also travels to the most unusual places to record new samples or builds custom-made instruments for a specific purpose. What also sets Zimmer’s work apart is his collaborative approach. He works in a unique creative environment, surrounded by fellow composers and musicians. Together, they experiment with new sounds and samples and continuously challenge each other to create extraordinary new film music.
WORLD PREMIERE IN GENEVA TONIGHT
The debut performance of the music Zimmer created for IWC took place tonight at an exclusive event held at the Théâtre du Léman in Geneva. In a concert titled “The Sound of Color”, the band also performed major hits from the composer’s incredible career, which already spans more than four decades. The event was organized as part of the Watches and Wonders exhibition and was not open to the public.