Born in South Africa 1988, Attie Esterhuizen is a composer of classical music and musical theatre. He started writing music at the age of 6 and since then Attie’s works have been performed and recorded by influential orchestras, solo artists and ensembles including the Academy Award winning Brussels Philharmonic, Orchestre de Salle Colonne, the World Youth Symphony Orchestra, Corey Cott and Tony nominated actor Adam Pascal, to name a few.
Attie completed his formal music composition training at the age of 17 at the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan USA. There his first works were performed by the World Youth Symphony Orchestra and he met and worked with other young musicians, visual artists, actors and dancers whom have since become some of the best known artists in their respected fields. Following his studies at the Arts Academy, Attie attended The Longy School of Music in Cambridge, Massachusetts, majoring in Solfége after which he moved to Paris to be a private student of Bernard De Crépy at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris. At the same time, Attie attended the “International School of Film and Directing (EICAR)”.
Following his time in France, Attie was accepted out of 2000 applicants to the BMI Musical Theater Workshop in New York. There he was part of a group of twenty composers and lyricists who for three years studied the compositional forms and techniques of the traditional Broadway musical.
By the age of 23 he founded AttieStudio, which has since co-produced two Operas in Paris and a Short Animation Musical, entitled Lady of the Night , bringing together an international team of approximately 150 people and animated by La Station Animation responsible for the Academy Award winning film, The Triplets of Bellville. The film, released in 2014, has been nominated/awarded for over 50 international awards and stars Adam Pascal known for his lead role in the cult film RENT. The accompanying orchestra was the Brussels Philharmonic. In 2012 Attie met the 8-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken who is considered one of the most influential composers of musical theatre of the 20th Century. They have since built a bond and Attie believes that the success of his own animation musical is in part due to the help and guidance he received from Menken during the creation thereof.
His first two orchestral works were performed by the World Youth Symphony Orchestra at the age of 14 and other major recordings include his work for Voice and Orchestra recorded by the Johannesburg Philharmonic, a piano duet at the historic Salle Cortot, a work commissioned by Damien Pass performed at the Petit Palais of the Opera Bastille, a piece for male choir recorded by the male singers of the Opera en Pleine Air and a commission by the Timeless Ballet Company, choreographed by Iranian Dancer Sohrab Chitan, accompanied by the Star Pop Orchestra. Attie has worked closely with the conductor Maxime Pascal, founder of the world-renowned contemporary ensemble Le Balcon. Two musical theatre songs were recorded by the Orchestre de Salle Colonne starring Broadway actors Corey Cott and Nora Menken. The Grammy award Nominated producer Tor Hyams has also produced two of Attie’s standalone musical theatre songs.
Attie is currently writing the Musical Adaptation of the best selling South African novel Spud with his partner and lyricist Télan Hamer.
Please enjoy a selection of his work on the Music page.