Pino Donaggio

" Donaggio's music is simply brilliant in building up the drama and tension. "

Written by Joep de Bruijn - Review of the regular release

Oorlogswinter (Winter in Wartime) is a Dutch film directed by Martin Koolhoven, based on the book by Jan Terlouw. The story takes place near the end of World War II in the Netherlands. We follow a 14th years old boy named Michiel who's desperately searching for some adventure and wants to join the resistance. His father, and mayor of the town, is annoyed by his son's behaviour, because he wants nothing else than to preserve the peace. When Michiel suddenly gets an assignment from the resistance, he's determined to carry it out.

Pino Donaggio has written a masterpiece of a score and one of the best Dutch and Donaggio scores ever. My favorites include La Monaca Di Monza, Carrie and Il Carniere. The boy soprano use in the score of Oorlogswinter is somewhat unique, because in this example it has become a bit of a regularity within the score. Generally, scores make use of them for a restricted number of scenes for each film. They're often used to serve a moment of awe or some scenery that requires a certain purity or innocence. But for this Dutch score Donaggio uses the boy's voice as a theme, that can be heard seven times in the film, questioning the line between innocence and rough reality if you will.

The composer succeeded in writing mostly melodic, thematic material that created a great pathos for the main character, but also wrote a very beautiful theme for the father. Already the first few notes of thematic music are spot on. The music is on the one hand quite subdued; and on the other hand very lyrical in the traditions of the Italian film (and used to few serve spaghetti western odes), meaning the music essentially plays a key role in the film, equally important to the actors, the story...

Donaggio's music is simply brilliant in building up the drama (and tension) with subtle moments, leading into a few great musical moments of great operatic proportions. I'm eternally grateful to the composer for this moving score.

Donaggio was convinced of the fact that this score needed to be released. Luckily, Isabella Film/ Inspire Music made it happen. But, as the composer stated, if no else would, he'd make it his mission to get it out on the market.

Director Martin Koolhoven on the cd release
"I was very honored that Pino allowed me to select the music for the cd release and that he let me choose the cue titles. It was the first time he had entrusted this to somebody else. I thought that the soundtrack had to be about 50 minutes long and above all, a beautiful representation of the score in the film. I had roughtly 80 minutes of score to choose from, which was more than Pino had ever written for a film. I began with the cues I thought were most important and significant. The first cue Pino made me listen to, at the time a midi version, was immediately spot on. The film wasn't finished yet, but already I felt he had understood what I wanted to tell and in which direction the music had to go. This was also evident in the name he had given this cue; 'Innocenza'. Everything on the release is presented in its original form, as written by Pino and without the editing modifications done for the movie."

Learn more about the scoring process and read our interview with Pino Donaggio.


1. Oorlogswinter (1.19)
2. Innocenza (2.31)
3. Oom Ben (1.39)
4. Wat Doen Ze Bij De Buren? (2.19)
5. De Dood Van Bertus (1.45)
6. De Eerste Poging (4.09)
7. Door Het IJs Gezakt (1.12)
8. Met Papa (1.20)
9. Arrestatie (4.41)
10. Oom Ben Naar Het Gemeentehuis (0.50)
11. De Executie (3.41)
12. Verdrongen (1.33)
13. De Nieuwe Poging (5.10)
14. Verborgen Verdriet (1.27)
15. Overname (1.32)
16. De Ontdekking (2.48)
17. De IJsselbrug (4.15)
18. Verlies (2.18)
19. Veranderd (2.04)
20. Aftiteling (4.31)

Total Length: 50.52
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 29 votes - average 4.55/5)

Released by

Isabella Film/ Inspire Music 660008 (regular release 2008)

Conducted by

Maurizio Abeni

Orchestrated by

Pino donaggio & Maurizio Abeni

Performed by

The Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra

Boy soprano

Boris Dobromirov Dobrev