Rendra Zawawi is an award-winning music composer, songwriter, producer, and musician who has had his work featured on international shores including the US, UK, Japan, and the Southeast Asia region. The LA-based composer is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Berklee College of Music with a degree in Contemporary Writing and Production, with additional studies in songwriting and video game music.
As a composer, Rendra has accomplished his leading role as a composer for feature scores like the the feature documentary “M for Malaysia” by Project M, as well as the epic fantasy “Temenggor” and horror thriller “Suraya” by Feisk Productions. He has also contributed original music to China’s television series “Never Stand Still” directed by Ola Bola’s prolific director Keng Guan Chiu. His other scoring works also include Sahar Jahani’s “Just One Night” (LA Shorts 2019, Glasgow Short Fest 2019, Toronto Shorts International), Amy Harvey and Mashana Malova’s “Antidote” (DMOFF 2017, Barcelona International 2017, Golden Bridge Festival 2017, Best Actress in European Cinematography Awards 2017), as well as award- winning director Zac Chia’s “Where Things May Grow” (Bates Film Festival 2017) and “Saptapadi” (LA Shorts Awards 2017 , Seattle Asian American 2017, Dallas Film Festival 2018) and Roger Liew’s web series “My Delivery Guy” (Miami Web Series Festival 2017).Rendra has also contributed additional music for FOX’s “American Horror Story:Apocalypse”, “American Horror Story: Cult” and FX’s “American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace” under Emmy-winning lead composer Mac Quayle. Some other upcoming shows that features Rendra’s original work includes NatGeo’s “Life Below Zero”, “Real Murder of OC”, and “1000lb Sisters”. Rendra has also written and produced theme songs for Malaysian telemovies such as “Kalau Dah Perempuan”, “Ana, Aku dan Aiman”, “Pulang Sayang”, and “Tarbiah Cinta” featuring Dina Nadzir, runner-up of Malaysian Idol 2004.
Rendra’s international work also includes him being the composer and songwriter for the song “We Are The Ones”, which was sung by China’s Sing! finalist Jeryl Lee, produced together with producer Alvin Wee (Tag, Kungfu Panda 3, Metal Gear Solid 5). The song was used as the main theme song for the ASEAN Cultural Week 2018 in Beijing, and had it’s music video recorded in the auspicious Forbidden City. Rendra is also the lead composer for the song “Together We Rise”, which was sung live in front of millions of viewers by award-winning performers Jaclyn Victor and Vince Chong in the South East Asian Games 2017 (SEA Games 2017) closing ceremony. Rendra’s latest arrangement of “Arena Cahaya” was co-produced and co-written alongside internationally acclaimed award-winning singer-songwriter Zee Avi (Bitterheart, Honeybee, Concrete Wall). Arena Cahaya is the theme song for the award-winning film “Ola Bola”, directed by Chiu (award-winning director for the highest grossing movie in Malaysia’s box office, “The Journey”). The song has since been awarded Best Theme Song for the Golden Horse Film Festival 2016 and the Malaysian Film Festival 2016.
In 2019, Rendra wrote the theme song “Bermula Kita” for the feature documentary “M For Malaysia”. The song features international superstar Yuna (Crush feat. Usher, Best Love, Blank Marquee feat G-Eazy), performed together with the Malaysian Philharmonic Youth Orchestra within the auspicious halls of PETRONAS Philharmonic Hall. The song has since been nominated as ‘Best Film Promo’ in the Music And Sounds Awards 2020, alongside Rendra’s second nomination for ‘Best Film Trailer’ for the documentary.
As a musician and artist, Rendra released his EP “Faceless”, for which he produced, composed, and sang, in 2012 . The song “Faceless” and the music video was nominated for ‘Best Rock Song’ and ‘Best Music Video’ respectively for VIMA Awards 2013. The song was also in the top three of Malaysian English Top 10 charts for two months. Rendra’s singing credits include being featured as an act for Rock The World 2010, opening act for legendary folk troubadour M.Nasir at the Ambassador Theatre Hall in Dublin, Rhythm Of The Universe 2013 Concert at Boston’s Box Festival, as well as Nobuo Uematsu’s Final Fantasy Distant World Concert at the Boston Symphony Hall, conducted by Arnie Roth. In 2003, Rendra was the runner-up winner for the duet singing reality show ‘Superstars’ on NTV7 Malaysia. To date, Rendra has performed over 50 live shows around the world including US, UK, Japan, and Malaysia.
Apart from working on his personal projects, Rendra also serves as an assistant to Emmy- winning composer and Grammy-nominated musician Mac Quayle, working on shows such as USA Network’s Golden Globe Winner “Mr. Robot”, FOX’s “American Horror Story”, “FEUD: Bette and Joan”, “9-1-1”, “American Crime Story”, “P.O.S.E”, Netflix’s “The Politician”, Sony’s “The Last of Us 2”, as well as FOX’s “Scream Queens”. Rendra has also worked with Oscar-winning film composer Yuval Ron on several projects, including as a music editor on the international feature film “The Evil That Men Do”.
In his free time, Rendra enjoys exploring coffee spots or taking a trip to Santa Monica for a good dose of Bulletproof Coffee. He is also a crossfit freak.