The Black Piper is a new cinematic band and film production company from Provo, Utah, formed by producer and literary consultant Sae Sae Norris and L.A. film composer Michael Bahnmiller (who has done music prep on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and La La Land).
Officially started in 2015, the group wrapped on their debut album, Kaladin, for a Christmas release in 2017. The album made it to #6 on Google Play's Top Film Score Playlist in 2018, next to Moana, TRON, and beating LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring.
When Sae Sae and Michael connected, they were at a crossroads with their careers and had each been going through some intense struggles. At first, Kaladin was a passion project that allowed them to come together professionally but it turned into a legitimate game changer. They developed a friendship, cohesiveness, and strength that allowed them to go from a couple creatives discussing projects in a coffee shop to a group of professionals leading a worldwide team of composers, artists, performers, filmmakers, and illustrators.
Currently, Sae Sae and Michael are expanding The Black Piper to newer, more ambitious heights. They have several albums and film projects in development.
Sae Sae Norris
Sae Sae Norris is a professional literary consultant whose clientele have gone on to land jobs at New Line Cinema, Fox, Columbia, Universal, Sony, Tri-Star, the SyFy Channel, and The History Channel. Her clients have received considerations and/or representation from William Morris-Endeavor, Creative Artists Agency, The Gersh Agency, and Benderspink; as well as placed in the Nicholl Fellowship, PAGE Awards, Sundance Institute, NBC/Universal, ABC/Disney and other screenplay contests and fellowships. Her novelist clients have received multiple book deals with Tor, MacMillan, Michael Wiese Publishers, have made the international best-seller list, and landed film/TV deals.
Mediums she consults in include screenplays, stage plays, novels, short stories, biographies/autobiographies, graphic novels, documentaries, short films, web series, and television bibles. She has taught classes on film genre and symbolism at the University of Utah, taught privately on intensive master screenwriting, and taught classes on film producing and screenwriting. She co-founded the non-profit Utah Women In Film and served as its Vice President for 2 years, President for another 2 years, and was the film industry liaison with Utah Film Studios. She has produced a handful of films, her latest being the Wheel of Time fan film Flight From Shadow, which can be found on YouTube.
Currently, she is the producer and creative director for The Black Piper, a band of film composers who create original book and movie soundtracks. Her current slate of projects includes writing a fantasy series, a memoir, a
sci-fi/fantasy screenplay, and she has two albums and a feature film in development.
When Sae Sae is not producing or writing, she can be found passed out on her couch surrounded by gluten free chocolate.
Michael Bahnmiller is a composer whose work has been used in film, television, podcasts, advertisement, and book soundtracks.
In the five short years he’s been working in the industry, Bahnmiller has been mentored by and worked with some of the industry’s best. From Academy Award-winning producer Rod Fried (Rudy), mixer Casey Stone (VICE, Frozen), master mixer Pat Sullivan (Guardians of the Galaxy), composers and orchestrators Philip Klein (Sundance Lab alumnus and former assistant to Harry Gregson-Williams), Conrad Pope (The Hobbit) and Kevin Kaska (The Greatest Showman, Pete’s Dragon). Bahnmiller has worked on such films as The Jungle Book, Independence Day: Resurgence, The BFG, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, La La Land, Jason Bourne, and many others.
He has had the honor of working with such musicians as Tina Guo (Wonder Woman, Dunkirk), Michael “Nomad” Ripoll (Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Knight & Day), Abbey Khalek (Life Itself, Planet Earth), Ayana Haviv (Wonder Woman: Bloodlines, Altered Carbon), Chris Bleth (Aquaman, Empire), and Aeralie Brighton (The Jungle Book, Ori and the Blind Forest), to name a few.
Determined to learn by doing, Bahnmiller set out to create an ambitious album, Kaladin, based on Brandon Sanderson’s best-selling international novel The Way of Kings. With eleven composers working on the project, Bahnmiller worked as the Lead Composer, Producer, Music Contractor, Orchestrator, and Post Production Supervisor. The album released at the end of 2017 and made it to Google Play’s top 6 Film Scores, and consistently receives 5-star ratings. The album also led him to connect with Christy Carew Marshall (Sundance Composing Lab Alumnus, Blacklist), who sought him out to collaborate with him on his next project.
When he is not composing, Bahnmiller is looking for his next project or three, spending time with his wife and three surviving children, kayaking, and sneaking in the occasional cat-nap.
The Black Piper aims to support rising composers and artists. The team at The Black Piper has worked hard to combine veteran talent with fresh voices on the KALADIN album, something they plan to do with each of their albums.