Alberto Iglesias
Iglesias at Film Music Festival in Kraków, 2013
Iglesias at Film Music Festival in Kraków, 2013
Background information
Birth nameAlberto Iglesias Fernández-Berridi
Born (1955-10-21) 21 October 1955 (age 68)
San Sebastián, Basque Country, Spain
GenresFilm score, contemporary classical music
Years active1983–present

Alberto Iglesias Fernández-Berridi (born 21 October 1955)[1] is a Spanish composer of Basque descent.[2] He was first noticed as a score composer for Spanish films, mostly from Pedro Almodóvar and Julio Medem.[1] His career became more international with time and he eventually started to work also in Hollywood. Since then, he has been nominated four times for an Academy Award for his work in the films The Constant Gardener (2005),[1] The Kite Runner (2007), Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), and Parallel Mothers (2021). His other film credits include soundtracks for Steven Soderbergh's Che.[3] and Hossein Amini's The Two Faces of January (2014).[4] Iglesias also has worked for ballet and has done other classical music work.

Early and personal life

Alberto Iglesias Fernández-Berridi[5] was born in 1955 in San Sebastián, Spain.[6] His sister is visual artist Cristina Iglesias.[7][8] Iglesias was the brother-in-law of the late Spanish sculptor, Juan Muñoz.[7][8]


Iglesias studied harmony and counterpoint at the Conservatory of his home city, with Francisco Escudero, continuing his education in Paris, where he studied composition and piano, and at Phonos studios, in Barcelona, where he learned electronic music. Afterwards, he created a duo of electronic music with Javier Navarrete, who worked and performed together from 1981 to 1986. Iglesias began working in film composition in the 1980s.[9] He has composed a number of scores for films directed by Pedro Almodóvar, such as The Flower of My Secret (1995), Live Flesh (1997), All About My Mother (1999), Talk to Her (2002), Bad Education (2004), Volver (2006), Broken Embraces (2009) and The Skin I Live In (2011).[6][10][11][12][13][14][15]

Iglesias also composed the music for Sex and Lucia (2001), directed by Julio Medem[6] and for Oliver Stone's documentary, Comandante (2003).[6]

Iglesias garnered his first Oscar nomination for his score in Fernando Meirelles's film adaptation of The Constant Gardener (2005).[6] Iglesias also composed the score for The Kite Runner (2007), based on Khaled Hosseini's 2003 novel of the same name.[10] Iglesias earned his second Oscar nomination for that score.[14][16][17]

In 2008, Iglesias composed Steven Soderbergh's 2008 two-part biopic, Che (2008), starring Benicio del Toro as Che Guevara.[18]

That same year, Iglesias composed the music for Tomas Alfredson's film adaptation of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, starring Gary Oldman as George Smiley. Iglesias told the Los Angeles Times: "(Alfredson) explained to me very well what this film is about. It's a film about loyalties and human relationships. Their spies are victims of this moment. That was the most important thing he told me. The film and the music show the more human side."[19] He received his third Oscar nomination for the latter film.[20]



Composer credits
Year Title Director Refs
1983 La Conquista de Albania Alfonso Ungría
1983 La Muerte de Mikel Imanol Uribe
1987 Adiós pequeña
1992 Cows (Vacas) Julio Medem
1993 Outrage! (¡Dispara!) Carlos Saura
1993 The Red Squirrel Julio Medem
1995 Una Casa en Las Afueras Pedro Costa
1995 The Flower of My Secret Pedro Almodóvar
1997 Live Flesh
1997 The Chambermaid on the Titanic Bigas Luna
1998 Lovers of the Arctic Circle Julio Medem
1999 All About My Mother Pedro Almodóvar
2001 Sex and Lucia Julio Medem
2002 Talk to Her Pedro Almodóvar
2002 The Dancer Upstairs John Malkovich
2004 Bad Education Pedro Almodóvar
2005 The Constant Gardener Fernando Meirelles
2006 Volver Pedro Almodóvar
2007 The Kite Runner Marc Forster
2008 Che Steven Soderbergh
2009 Broken Embraces Pedro Almodóvar
2010 Even the Rain Icíar Bollaín
2011 The Skin I Live In Pedro Almodóvar
2011 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Tomas Alfredson
2012 I'm So Excited Pedro Almodóvar
2014 The Two Faces of January Hossein Amini
2014 Exodus: Gods and Kings Ridley Scott
2015 Ma Ma Julio Medem
2016 Julieta Pedro Almodóvar
2017 The Summit Santiago Mitre
2018 Quién te cantará Carlos Vermut
2018 Yuli: The Carlos Acosta Story Icíar Bollaín
2019 Pain and Glory Pedro Almodóvar
2020 The Human Voice
2021 Parallel Mothers
2021 Maixabel Icíar Bollaín


Iglesias composed the musical score for four ballets produced by Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato and the Spanish National Dance Company.

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Project Result Ref.
2005 Academy Award Best Original Score The Constant Gardener Nominated
2007 The Kite Runner Nominated
2011 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Nominated
2021 Parallel Mothers Nominated
2007 Golden Globe Awards Best Original Score The Kite Runner Nominated
2022 Parallel Mothers Nominated
2005 British Academy Film Awards Best Original Music The Constant Gardener Nominated
2007 The Kite Runner Nominated
2011 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Nominated
2004 European Film Awards Best Composer Bad Education & Take My Eyes Nominated
2006 Volver Won
2011 The Skin I Live In Nominated
1992 Goya Awards Best Original Score Vacas Nominated
1993 La ardilla roja Won
1996 Tierra Won
1998 Los amantes del círculo polar Won
1999 Todo sobre mi madre Won
2001 Lucia y el sexo Won
2002 Hable con ella Won [21]
2006 Volver Won
2008 Che Nominated
2009 Broken Embraces Won
2010 Even the Rain Won
2011 The Skin I Live In Won
2015 Ma Ma Nominated
2016 Julieta Nominated
2017 The Summit Nominated
2018 Yuli Nominated
2019 Pain and Glory Won
2021 Maixabel Nominated
2019 Cannes Film Festival Best Soundtrack Pain and Glory Won [22]
2011 Hollywood Film Festival Soundtrack Composer of the Year Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy / The Skin I Live In Won
2019 Platino Awards Best Original Score Yuli Won
2004 World Soundtrack Awards Soundtrack Composer of the Year Bad Education Nominated
2005 The Constant Gardener Won
2012 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy / The Skin I Live In Won [23]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Gutierrez, Evan C. "Alberto Iglesias Biography". Allmusic. Netaktion LLC. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  2. ^ Koldo Landaluze (2023-10-05). "Alberto Iglesias publica dos nuevas composiciones, 'Phantom Songs' y 'Asalto al castillo'". naiz (in Spanish). Retrieved 2024-01-09.
  3. ^ Baker, Aaron (31 May 2011). Steven Soderbergh. University of Illinois Press. p. 121. ISBN 978-0252036057.
  4. ^ Amini, Hossein (2014). The Two Faces of January. Magnolia Pictures. Retrieved 31 December 2021.
  5. ^ "Alberto Iglesias". People.theiapolis. Retrieved 18 October 2015.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ a b c d e "Composer Iglesias Wins Spain Film Award". Fox News Channel. 3 September 2007. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  7. ^ a b Lingwood, James (2 September 2001). "'He made the world larger'". The Observer. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Juan Munoz". The Daily Telegraph. 31 August 2001. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  9. ^ Alberto Iglesias Biography, Allmusic
  10. ^ a b "Spain Honors a Film Composer". The New York Times. 4 September 2007. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  11. ^ Wilmington, Michael (25 December 2002). "In 'Talk to Her,' Almodovar creates his masterpiece". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  12. ^ Phillips, Michael (22 November 2006). "In 'Volver,' Almodovar masters a melange of genres". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  13. ^ Mira, Alberto (2005). The Cinema of Spain and Portugal. Wallflower Press. ISBN 9781904764441.
  14. ^ a b "Alberto Iglesias, The Sound of Almodovar". WQXR-FM. 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  15. ^ Phillips, Michael (20 October 2011). "Sleek, lovely 'Skin I Live In' reveals elegance in the grotesque -- 3 stars". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  16. ^ "Alberto Iglesias".
  17. ^ "Overview for Alberto Iglesias". Turner Classic Movies.
  18. ^ Phillips, Michael (16 September 2014). "'Che' stars Benicio Del Toro, Demian Bichir". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  19. ^ Martens, Todd (8 December 2011). "The Scores: Iglesias searches for the sound of loyalty in 'Tinker'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  20. ^ "The 84th Academy Awards". The Boston Globe. 24 January 2012. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  21. ^ Mira, Alberto (2010) The A to Z of Spanish Cinema, Scarecrow Press, ISBN 978-0810876224, p. 158
  22. ^ EFE (25 May 2019). "La banda sonora de Alberto Iglesias para "Dolor y Gloria", premiada en Cannes". ABC (in Spanish). Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  23. ^ Kilday, Greg (21 October 2012) "Alberto Iglesias Named Film Composer of the Year at the World Soundtrack Awards", The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 21 September 2013