This movie, a co-production between Working Title and Netflix, told the incredible true story of Yusra and Sarah Mardini, who embarked on a harrowing journey as refugees, a journey which took them from war-torn Syria to the 2016 Rio Olympics. The sisters fled their home country of Syria in 2015, and journeyed to Lebanon and then onto Turkey where they arranged to be smuggled into Greece on a dinghy. However, the refugees were in the middle of the Aegean Sea when the engine of the overcrowded dinghy cut out and the pair, plus two others who could swim, were responsible for saving the lives of those on board. Just a year after their harrowing experience Yusra competed in two swimming events at the Rio Olympics as part of the Refugee Olympic team
I got involved after reading the brilliant Jack Thorne’s original screenplay in 2019 and the source material proved incredibly inspiring. A truly incredible true story, over a period of months I worked to try to capture the emotions of the piece, from the harrowing sea crossing, through to the eventual triumph of spirit represented by the Olympics. I was very proud of the score that resulted and was so fortunate to be able to create it with the magnificent musicians in London. In many ways the finished movie was ultimately somewhat frustrating on a personal level, as a lot of original intentions musically were edited and reduced, or replaced by a succession of source tracks. However, despite this I was hugely proud that the film achieved an audience who may otherwise have been unaware of the challenges faced every day by refugees around the world. The score album represents the original cues as recorded in early 2022.