The Mission-Gabriel’s Oboe

The Mission

Released: 1986
Director: Roland Joffe
Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons

The Film: The Oscar winning 1986 film tells the story of a Spanish Jesuit priest who goes into the South American jungle to build a mission and convert a community of Guarani indians whilst fighting off the dastardly Portuguese colonials, who are trying to enslave the community.

The Composer:
Ennio Morricone – this Italian born composer has written scores of more than 500 films and TV series. His haunting soundtrack for The Mission is regarded as one of his best – and includes the beautiful and lyrical Gabriel’s Oboe. “Gabriel’s Oboe” is the main theme for the 1986 film The Mission directed by Roland Joffé. The theme was written by Italian composer Ennio Morricone, and has since been arranged and performed several times by artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, Holly Gornik, and Brynjar Hoff, among others. The theme has been called “unforgettable” and a “celebrated oboe melody”. The music is an eclectic mix of styles. Within the broadly symphonic sound-world, there’s also space for liturgical chorales and indigenous drumming. It was deliberately intended to reflect the mission of Spanish Jesuits in their attempt to protect a South American tribe from exploitation. Morricone was honored with both a Golden Globe and a Bafta for The Mission – although it wasn’t this film score alone that won him an Oscar.

Visit: to listen for yourself.