July 2017
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Empires Apart

I’m excited to be writing music for Empires Apart, a multi-civ real-time strategy game developed by DESTINYbit for publisher Slitherine.

The game is modeled after genre classics like Age of Empires 2, but implemented with a modern 3D engine. Speaking as someone who scored two RTS games of that era (Empire Earth 2 and 3) — not to mention someone who spent far too many hours playing them — it’s great fun to return to such familiar territory. The multi-civilization aspect allows me to develop different musical vocabularies and themes for each country involved in gameplay.

Empires Apart will be available via Steam in October.

June 2017
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The Music Chamber podcast

I recently joined Dan Hegarty and Charlie Waymire on an episode of The Music Chamber podcast. We talked about film and media scoring, taking a beginner-friendly approach to the basics of the subject.

You can listen to the episode here.

January 2017
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Ghost Attackers VR launches in Tokyo

I had tremendous fun last month scoring my first VR game. Ghost Attackers VR (Vitei/GREE) is an arcade installation game that’s part of the brand new VR Park Tokyo in Tokyo’s Shibuya district.


The game is a two-person collaborative experience, where the primary player (a.k.a. the one with the gun) wears the VR helmet and blasts away attacking ghosts in a haunted mansion environment. A secondary player participates with a tablet, and is responsible for controlling the flashlight.



Keeping with the game’s larger-than-life visuals, I gave the game a colorful and often-frenzied orchestral score, sometimes feeling like a mad scherzo, other times like a twisted Eastern European folk tune, and yet others like a dark gothic minuet. Here’s a quick excerpt for you.

The music is © GREE, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

June 2016
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“A Feast of Snacks” at the 2016 Hollywood Fringe

My stage musical A Feast of Snacks is currently running at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. Feast is a collection of four short musical comedies, each about fifteen minutes in length. Most of the shows are award-winning graduates of various short play festivals around the world. Produced by Theatre Unleashed (of which I am a newly minted artist-in-residence), the production runs through late July.

Showtimes and ticket information can be found here. If you’re in the area, I hope you can make it!


March 2016

Goldstar interview

I was interviewed by Goldstar, beloved purveyor of discount live event tickets, as part of their “Inspired By” series focusing on creative types. The questions focused on live performance, as that’s Goldstar’s raison d’être .

To read my interview, just follow this handy link.

August 2015

In Hell’s Bright Shadow

I was pleased to team up with fellow composer Kyle Johnson and create original music for the Syrinscape sound pack “In Hell’s Bright Shadow”. Syrinscape is the licensed provider of audio accompaniment for Paizo’s popular Pathfinder tabletop RPG. Fantasy scores are one of my favorite genres of music, and hence I had a lot of fun with this project.

June 2014
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Identity guzheng concerto performed by Chicago Sinfonietta

In May 2014 Michael’s concerto for guzheng and orchestra (“Identity: Zhongshan Zhuang”, co-written with Victor Cheng) continued its concert tour of the United States with two performances by the renowned Chicago Sinfonietta, under the baton of maestro Mei-Ann Chen. Guzheng virtuoso Su Chang returned as soloist. The concerto was programmed alongside a number of other orchestral works with European and Far Eastern folk music influences.

Audiences were enthusiastic during both performances in Naperville and Symphony Center in downtown Chicago, breaking into applause even between movements.

From the Chicago Tribune Local (Aurora): “It was unforgettable and made me fall in love with this beautiful instrument and with such touching Chinese music. The combination of a modern symphonic orchestra and an ancient Chinese instrument sounded so unique … [it] should be presented to more and more audiences in the world”

Michael Gordon Shapiro, Mei-Ann Chen, guzheng soloist Su Chang, co-composer/producer Victor Cheng.

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Morituri Te Salutant // Michael Gordon Shapiro - HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  1. Morituri Te Salutant // Michael Gordon Shapiro - HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  2. Emerald, Texas // HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  3. Mythic Battle // HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  4. The Yard Sale // Michael Gordon Shapiro - HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  5. Investigations // HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  6. Home Room // HOMEPAGE MUSIC
  7. Sands of Arabia // HOMEPAGE MUSIC