How Germaine Franco Brought the Sounds of Colombia to Her Studio

KUSC’s Brian Lauritzen and Germaine Franco

Hit play below to listen to Part 1 of our interview with Germaine Franco.

Hit play below to listen to Part 2 of our interview with Germaine Franco.

Germaine Franco talks to Brian Lauritzen about writing the score for the Oscar-winning Disney film Encanto, their 60th animated feature. She had to create a musical world inspired by the sounds and rhythms of Colombia, which would complement the songs by Lin Manuel Miranda. The story tells of the Madrigal family, whose members possess magical gifts – except for Mirabel.

For the project, because of Covid, she wasn’t able to travel to Colombia for research. Instead, she brought Colombia to her studio, in the form of books, all kinds of musical recordings, and several special instruments native to the region. Having gotten her musical start as a percussionist, Franco (who was also part of the musical team for the Pixar movie Coco) says both rhythmic and melodic ideas are linked to the various characters.

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Brian Lauritzen

Brian Lauritzen is the weekday afternoon drive host for Classical KUSC and host of the nationally-syndicated radio broadcasts of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.


Jeffrey Freymann

Jeffrey is an arts producer for KUSC and our sister station, Classical KDFC, in San Francisco.