Jonathan Zalben received a Master's degree in music composition and multimedia from New York University, a BA in music from Yale University, and studied violin and music composition at Juilliard Pre-College. He currently runs First Frame Music a company for music supervision, licensing, and score.
Zalben has written music for films released by HBO, Lionsgate, Discovery, and Sony Pictures Classics. His film music has also screened at Sundance, Berlin, SXSW, Tribeca, and LA Film Festival. He scored the Oscar-nominated documentary, Redemption (HBO) directed by Jon Alpert and Matthew O'Neill, the feature film "Flock of Dudes" (Starz) starring Chris D'Elia, Hannah Simone, and Ray Liotta, as well as the documentary There's Something Wrong with Aunt Diane (HBO), directed by Liz Garbus. His music has been heard at Sundance in Morgan Spurlock's The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (Sony Pictures Classics), Evan Glodell's Bellflower (Oscilloscope), and Elizabeth Lo's New York Times Op-Doc, Hotel 22 (PBS).
Zalben has also written original music for Son of Morning (eOne: Joseph Cross, Danny Glover, Heather Graham, Lorraine Bracco), Gods of Circumstance (Cineville: John Schneider), Snoop Dogg's Hood of Horror (Lionsgate / Xenon Pictures: Jason Alexander, Method Man), Kissing Cousins (David Allen Grier, Jaleel White), Germans and Jews (First Run Features), Beyond the Trophy (Lionsgate: Eric Roberts, Michael Madsen). He orchestrated the music for Repo: The Genetic Opera (Lionsgate / Twisted Pictures: Paris Hilton, Paul Sorvino, Alexa Vega, Sarah Brightman, Anthony Head).
Zalben's music supervision credits include Amy Berg's Janis: Little Girl Blue (PBS), Ian Old's The Fixer starring James Franco and Melissa Leo, Courteney Cox's directorial debut Just Before I Go (Starz), Adam Goldberg's No Way Jose (Sony Pictures Worldwide), Comedy Warriors (Showtime), Sunset Strip (Showtime), The Short Game (Netflix / Samuel Goldwyn Films), The Guest (Snoot Entertainment / Universal Pictures), Cheap Thrills (Drafthouse) starring Pat Healy, Sara Paxton, and Ethan Embry, and Gabriel Cowan's 3 Nights in the Desert (Monterey Media) starring Wes Bentley, Vincent Piazza, and Amber Tamblyn.
Zalben has received grants from the Experimental TV Center through the New York State Council on the Arts, American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP), Lower Manhattan Cultural Council's Manhattan Community Arts Fund and Swing Space Program, US Navy, and the National Academy of Sciences. His multimedia work has been presented at the Boston Public Library during Boston Cyberarts, Art Without Walls in Central Park, Knitting Factory, PS122, 3LD, HERE Art Center, Ontological Theater at St. Mark's Church, and Galapagos Art Space. He was a research fellow at the US Department of Energy, Argonne National Laboratory and has also been in residence at the Studio for Electro-Instrumental Music (STEIM) in Amsterdam.
Compound Pilot, a net art collaboration with Marshall Jones, won the "Classic" Award at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival and has been shown at galleries in the US, Canada, Korea, Argentina, Australia, England, and Armenia.
Zalben has over a decade of experience in interaction design and physical computing and holds a U.S. patent for a muffler that reduces noise through a series of tuned domes.
"Zalben lends the show a mysterious and mellow score that accentuates the beautiful stage pictures while creating some mental pictures of its own." - Richard Hinojosa, nytheatre.com
"Zalben's music and video work is an inspiring example of how computer technology and the Internet are expanding the boundaries of video and music." - Matthew Ross, The Daily Reel
"The ace in the hole for us was Jonathan Zalben. That guy found some of the greatest (and cheapest!) tracks for us to use that were perfect for the movie. Music will only make a good movie better." - Huffington Post Q&A with Morgan Spurlock, director, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold
"Without my music supervisor, Jonathan Zalben, there would have been absolutely no way that it would have ever gone down. I owe a lot to him." - Icon vs. Icon Q&A with Adam Goldberg, director, No Way Jose
"Zalben has devised his own eloquent monument to 9/11...a cathartic moment of great beauty...ephemeral and haunting...The brilliance of Zalben's WTC is that it not only reminds us not to forget but also reflects on the nature of memory itself in its absolute fragility." - Les Hunter, offoffonline.com on WTC