Nainita Desai

Nainita Desai (for Documentary work)

“It was an absolute pleasure to work with Nainita on our Discovery Channel UK/Science Channel USA series, Legends of the Deep. The musical landscape she created for our underwater ocean exploration series…was truly exceptional…I’m forever grateful to have had the privilege to work with her… Her ability to use thematic language to help keep the understanding of our common musical goals was a huge asset to the production. I would work with her again in a heartbeat and I look forward to actually getting to meet her face to face one day to say thank you in person!!”

- Stephanie Pickering, Executive Producer, Cinfelix


Working at the forefront of a new wave of artists, Nainita is a BAFTA BREAKTHROUGH BRIT and has scored countless bespoke TV series and film scores for all the major broadcasters from the BBC to HBO to ITV and C4. She is a Music+Sound Award 2016 winner for Best Feature Film Score, GOPO Romania Film Awards Nominee 2019 for Best Film Score, RTS West Award 2019 Nominee for BBC series Extraordinary Rituals and Asian Women of Achievement Nominee for Arts+Culture 2019

Nainita’s recent releases include Untamed Romania, the most successful Romanian non-fiction film in 2018 that World Premiered at Transylvania Film Festival 2018 and The Life After (BBC / Screen Ireland) World Premiere at Galway Intl Film Festival 2018.

Recent 2019 releases include For Sama (which won best documentary at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival), the BFI Feature Darkness Visible Dir: Neil Biswas (BFI | Protaganist) and WW2 thriller Enemy Within (Dir: Gabriel Robertson).

Her current projects include feature films The Reason I Jump (BFI) made by award winning Dir Jerry Rothwell | Al Morrow, Exit Eve, exec prod: Camille Gatin (The Girl With All the Gifts) and Interactive movie / video game Telling Lies for Annapurna Interactive (Phantom Thread) directed by multi-Bafta winning Sam Barlow.

Working in a wide range of musical genres, Nainita moves seamlessly between working with orchestras including the London Contemporary Orchestra (Phantom Thread, There Will Be Blood) and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and ethnic influenced music utilising her collection of custom made instruments from around the world, to electronic and experimental sound design well as song-writing which has led to collaborations with artists including Eivor (The Last Kingdom) and writing documentary musicals for the BBC including the acclaimed Mumbai High – The Musical.

Nainita’s musical foundations are rooted in documentary where she has forged an enviable reputation, working with leading film makers on numerous projects that have garnered OSCAR, BAFTA, EMMY awards and nominations, proving time and again that she is extremely versatile, able to adapt to the demands of any project with an ability to embrace every score with a unique creative approach.

As a sound designer, Nainita’s career began on feature films for Bertolluci (Little Buddha) and Werner Herzog (Lessons of Darkness) including Backbeat (Dir: Ian Softley), Lessons of Darkness (Dir: Werner Herzog), August (Dir: Anthony Hopkins), and Hackers (Angelina Jolie).

Nainita obtained degrees in Mathematics before attending the NFTS specializing in sound design. She was born and brought up in London to Indian parents and her eclectic musical upbringing as a child led her to studying the sitar, piano, guitar, tabla, singing and violin. Her passion for music technology led to her working as a freelance music engineer working with many top artistes and bands ranging from The Damned to Tori Amos. which led to work with Peter Gabriel during the legendary Real World Recording Week  sessions, working with over 70 of the top World Music artistes including Papa Wemba, Billy Cobham, Daniel Lanois, Jane Sibbery, Nigel Kennedy, Sinead O’Connor, Ravi Shankar and Peter Gabriel.


  • GOPO Romanian Film Awards Nominee 2019 
  • NOMINEE: BEST FILM SCORE: Untamed Romania
  • NOMINEE: BEST TV SCORE: Extraordinary Rituals

You can hear some of her library cues at