The maestro behind the music for “Inception” and “Interstellar” is playing Coachella

Published January 4, 2017 by lagmen
Cue intense orchestral score.

Coachella, the glitzy music bacchanal drawing thousands of beads-wearing twenty-somethings to the California desert each spring, has released its 2017 festival lineup. There’s an oddity in this year’s list of performers: Hans Zimmer, the award-winning composer who wrote the score to The Lion King, The Dark Knight, Inception, Interstellar, Pirates of the Caribbean, and several other blockbuster films.

Zimmer will take the stage(s) alongside headliners Radiohead, Beyoncé, and Kendrick Lamar, in addition to Bon Iver, Future, Lorde, DJ Khaled, and dozens of other acts—most of whom are either Top 40 starlets or rising indie bands, not 59-year-old Hollywood composers.

While Zimmer’s place in the lineup is a departure from Coachella’s norm, it shouldn’t actually come as that much of a surprise. Coachella, which has grown over the years from a quirky little festival into a multimillion-dollar production complete with holograms of dead rappers, is struggling with a problem music festivals are facing at large: Homogeneity.

Festivals are increasingly boasting the same experiences and hosting all the same musicians, giving little incentive for fans to choose a particular event over another; Zimmer’s inclusion seems a simple enough way on Coachella’s part to begin setting itself apart.

No word yet on what pieces Zimmer will perform at the festival, or whether he’ll bring a full orchestra onto the stage.

Read this next: Black Mozart: A brief history of rappers performing with classical musicians

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