Chris Babida was born and raised in Hong Kong. He has been considered to be one of the most senior music directors, producers, composers, arrangers and performing artists in S.E Asia. Because of his versatile ability in music, he was sometimes called the 'Godfather of Pop and Cross-over Music'. He has been performing in a wide variety of musical situations ranging from pop, jazz, classical, alternative, new age, oriental cross-over, Chinese instrumental....etc.
Chris has been known to be an outstanding pianist. He began to study piano at the age of 5 and he started to perform in hotels and nightclubs as a percussionist at the early age of 7. As a teenager, he was also a self-taught guitar, bass and saxophone player and turned professional as early as the age of 15 in 1965 and joined Tony Carpio who was a leading professional jazz Guitarist. He played frequently with a lot of professional jazz musicians in those days in Asia. When he was 20 years old, his unusual experience made him the youngest topmost bandleader of the leading hotels, pubs and nightclubs in different Asian countries.
In the early 70's, Chris first burst onto the pop scene in Hong Kong he became the music director of EMI Records in which he started to participate in various kinds of music productions including record producing, film scoring, pop concerts, special events organized by TV and Radio Station...etc. In 1978, he pursued further studies and attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston, majoring "Jazz Composition and Arrangement" and later he enrolled in Dick Grove's Workshop where he completed a course of "Film Scoring and Music Business".
After accomplishing his further music studies in the United States in Boston Berklee College of Music, Chris returned to Hong Kong in the early 80's in which that the time the pop music market started to soar. With over 20 years of live-stage experience Chris quickly became one of the most popular music directors mostly collaborated with first class singers like Sam Hui, Leslie Cheung, Paula Tsui, Sally Yeh..etc. Over the years Chris has led bands in different sizes and styles to perform in more than 1000 shows. In 1997, he was the music director of the celebration ceremony for the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (the "Change Over") which was the major program officially organized by the Hong Kong Government. It was considered to be recognition to his professional success as well as his continuous contributions for the music industry.
In addition to being a prominent Music Director, Chris has been known also as a renowned record producer, composer and arranger. During the past 30 years Chris has arranged more than 3,000 songs in which about half of them are his original compositions. In the early 90's he allocated from Hong Kong to Taiwan and again established himself in the Taiwan Mandarin market. He wrote numerous pop songs for singers such as CoCo Lee, Tsai Chin, Elva Hsiao and many more, and some of them became great hits in the charts. It should also be mentioned that the theme song he wrote for the movie "Ces't la Vie, Mon Cheri" has achieved tremendous success ever since it was released in 1993. It has been considered to be one of the most popular songs in the pop music history of Taiwan, and it won Chris an award the "Best Song of the Century" organized by the "Music Copyright Intermediary Society of Chinese Taipei" in 2000.
In 1998, Chris accomplished his first musical play "Angel Never Sleeps" written for Godot Theatre Company in Taiwan. All music in the play were original composed and orchestrated by Chris, and he was also the Music Director and Conductor for the performances. The music was in Latin style, which was actually not usual to the Taiwan audience however the play turned out to be very successful, and later was invited to tour Mainland China in 2000. Returning from the tour Chris again wrote three more musicals including "A Little Town in Danshui" (1999), "City Lights" (2001) and "Shanghai Nights" (2002).
Another remarkable part of Chris' career comes from his TV and Film scoring. He has written scores for more than 50 films and 30 TV series, which obtained him numbers of awards and nominations with Golden Horse Awards (Taiwan) and Hong Kong Film Awards. One of his works "Fleeing By Night" won him the "Best Music" in the 46th Asia Pacific Film Festival as well.
Besides Hong Kong and Taiwan, Chris has high reputation in Mainland China as well. He relocated to Beijing in early 2007 and built a studio in Beijing as well. In the early 90's he was already the Music Director for Chia Tai Records which was at that time a very important label in the China's record market. In 2001 he produced and arranged the theme song for the China's Soccer Team that was sung by 10 superstar singers. In 2004, as Chris wrote the music for the prime time TV series "Cang Hai Bai Nian" he was considered to be the first composer who was not originally from Mainland China but was able to write scores for the production by CCTV.
Since the mid 80's Chris has been releasing his own instrumental albums for every one or two years. In 2002 he decided to contribute more time in promoting and developing Jazz for Chinese, which all along is his favorite kind of music. In the past two years he has been very active in the jazz performances with his trio and in his latest album "Cafe Ballads" (2003), he produced and performs twelve most famous songs in the Mandarin market in which he has introduced to the younger generation, balancing music high quality standards with pop music and mixing cross cultures in his production.
Chris wrote his debut Ballet and performed it in Hong Kong on March 2006. The Ballet is based on the famous story of "Suzie Wong" and shall be composed, orchestrated and conducted a 50 piece orchestra. He then did his second modern ballet "VOYAGES" for the Suzhou Cultural Science centre in Suzhou China in 2008 February and was Directed by Mr. Stephen Jeffries who was the Artistic Director for the Hongkong Ballet in Hongkong.
His latest and yet most important work in 2008 was he wrote the "OFFICIAL THEME SONG FOR THE OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY" in China.
updated June 27 2008