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How Pinar Toprak became the first female composer to write a billion dollar film

Pinar Toprak breaks down the glass ceiling for female composers. The popular already achieved Fourteen days Video game and DC’s justice leagueshe recently achieved her greatest achievement to date: creating the score for Marvel Studios Captain Marvel. This makes her the first woman ever to score a billion-dollar blockbuster film.

Recently, Toprak showed off his enhanced skills as the film’s producer The walk, with Justin Chatwin and Malcolm McDowell. In August, her theme tune will debut for Amazon Prime’s Thursday Night Football, making her the first woman to ever compose an original tune for an NFL media pack.

The odds stood against Turkish-born Toprak at every step on her journey to becoming an industry-leading film composer. Even as a young girl, she was fascinated by the power of music in films. “I was fascinated by the legendary John Williams and Ennio Morricone for their craftsmanship.” She decided she wanted to do what they did. But nobody around her believed that she would make it, so they stopped her from pursuing her bold ambitions. “In the 1990s, Istanbul society wasn’t used to a Turkish woman thinking so big,” she says.

When she applied to Berklee College of Music, she felt the lack of support that she applied for a piano major rather than a film scoring degree. But that changed after just one month of classes at the renowned institution. Toprak had what she calls a “beautiful happy moment.” She realized that she would rather fail at what she loves than succeed at what others expect of her.

Her first break was an internship at Paramount Pictures when she was just 20 years old. This helped Toprak land her dream job of working with Hans Zimmer at what was then Media Ventures International. Over the next few years, she continued to refine her craft and take on larger projects.

To this day, Toprak is motivated by a true passion for what she does. She says: “For me, doing something that actually fulfills me intellectually, spiritually and emotionally is the reward. Every day I wake up grateful that I get to do this.”

The biggest challenge Toprak has faced in her career has been proving her ability as a composer to others. She overcame this by showing a willingness to play the long game. To the Captain Marvel, she invested her own money in hiring a 70-piece orchestra to show the studio that she could cope with composing and performing a score of this magnitude. She fully expects to continue making such decisions in order to achieve her ever-expanding goals.

Toprak lives her purpose in life despite the obstacles in her path, and she wants other people to believe in herself like she does. She says: “The greatest thing a young person can do for themselves is find out what makes them shine. What makes you feel lost in it and lose track of time? What feels fulfilling? Once you know this, you can increase your chances of success by focusing on one obstacle at a time.”

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