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Sean Callery

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Sean P. Callery (born 1964) is an American film and television composer, best known for scoring 24 for all of its nine seasons, as well as 24: The Game.

Classically trained as a composer and musician, Callery's musical distinction lies in his integration of instruments, live sound, and sophisticated sound effects created through elaborate computer manipulation. Passages reminiscent of electroacoustic music support the characteristic mood of 24 without the use of any sounds normally thought of as musical.

Biography Edit

Day 4 production Surnow Callery Cassar Kiefer

Sean Callery with Joel Surnow, Jon Cassar and Kiefer Sutherland

Callery was born in Hartford, Connecticut and raised in Bristol, Rhode Island and began playing the piano from a very early age. While pursuing a classical music education, he played jazz piano in nightclubs on weekends, and educated himself in various genres of music, as well as other instruments including the trombone and tuba. He went on to study at the New England Conservatory of Music, earning a degree in piano performance in 1987. Callery also studied composition, and while working in the school's audio department to help with his education costs, he soon developed an interest in the burgeoning technologies that were being developed.

In late 1987, Callery moved to Los Angeles to work for New England Digital, the creators of the Synclavier synthesizer, while he pursued his own musical career. He trained many composers on how to use this new musical technology, including Alan Silvestri, James Newton Howard, Herbie Hancock, and Mark Snow. During this time, he also began performing and arranging songs for various artists and projects. In 1989, he composed music for the Siegfried & Roy show in Las Vegas. He worked as a sound designer on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and the film Star Trek Generations (written by Brannon Braga) from 1993 to 1995, earning his first Emmy Award nomination. In 1996, Snow introduced Callery to executive producer Joel Surnow, and Callery soon was hired to compose the dramatic underscore for the USA Network series La Femme Nikita, which aired for five seasons between 1997 and 2001.

Immediately following La Femme Nikita, Callery again collaborated with Surnow on the pilot episode for 24. One of his most distinctive and memorable pieces, the "24 Theme," was written to serve as Jack Bauer's theme based solely off Surnow and Robert Cochran's script; it played over the opening and end credits of the pilot, as well as the end credits of every subsequent episode. Callery scored every episode of the series from 2001 to 2014, receiving ten Emmy Award nominations and winning in 2003, 2006, and 2010. There have been three soundtrack releases comprised of his selected cues from the first five seasons and 24: Redemption. He also composed and conducted the orchestral score for 24: The Game in 2006.

Following 24, Surnow composed for various projects by Joel Surnow, including The ½ Hour News Hour (2007), The Kennedys (2011), and Surnow's directorial debut Small Time (2014). He scored the 2011 web series The Confession, starring Kiefer Sutherland and Greg Ellis. Since 2011, he has composed the score for Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa's award-winning Showtime series Homeland, also written and produced by Chip Johannessen. Other TV series in Callery's filmography include Medium (2005-2011), Bones (2008-present), and Elementary (2012-present).

24 credits Edit




2x05 Bassist the bassist

Callery has a non-speaking cameo in "Day 2: 12:00pm-1:00pm" as the bassist in Miguel's band.

24-related appearances Edit

Awards and nominationsEdit

See also: 24's awards and honors
Organization Year Category Work Result
Emmy Awards 2002 Outstanding Music Composition for a Series, Dramatic Underscore "Day 1: 7:00am-8:00am"
2003 "Day 2: 10:00pm-11:00pm"
2004 "Day 3: 6:00am-7:00am"
2005 "Day 4: 2:00am-3:00am"
2006 "Day 5: 6:00am-7:00am"
2007 "Day 6: 6:00pm-7:00pm"
2009 Outstanding Music Composition for a Miniseries, Movie or Special, Original Dramatic Score 24: Redemption
Outstanding Music Composition for a Series, Dramatic Underscore "Day 7: 7:00am-8:00am"
2010 "Day 8: 3:00pm-4:00pm"
2015 Outstanding Music Composition For A Limited Series, Movie or a Special (Original Dramatic Score) "Day 9: 11:00am-12:00pm"
ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards 2003 Top TV Series Season 2
2006 Season 5
IFMCA Awards 2006 Best Original Score for Television

Selected filmography Edit

  • Jessica Jones (2015-present)
  • 24: Live Another Day (2014)
  • Homeland (2011-present)
  • Elementary (2012-present)
  • Bones (2008-present)
  • Medium (2005-2011)
  • The Kennedys (2011)
  • The Confession (2011)
  • 24 (2001-2010)
  • 24: Redemption (2008)
  • Sheena (2000-2001)
  • La Femme Nikita (1996-1999)

External links Edit

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