Kevin Penkin (born 22 May 1992) is a British-born Australian composer, primarily for video games and anime. He is best known for composing the score of the anime Made in Abyss, which won Best Score at the 2nd Crunchyroll Anime Awards, and the score for the Tower of God anime adaptation, which won Best Score at the 5th Crunchyroll Anime Awards.[1]

Kevin Penkin
Born (1992-05-22) 22 May 1992 (age 32)
United Kingdom
OriginPerth, Western Australia
Years active2011–present



Penkin was born on 22 May 1992 in the United Kingdom,[2][3] and grew up in Perth, Western Australia.[4] Penkin's interest in video game music started from when he first heard the "Phendrana Drifts" theme from Metroid Prime;[4] in a 2012 interview, he referred to the theme's electronic synths and acoustic instruments as "absolute bliss".[4]

Penkin began his career with composition credits in the 2011 short films Play Lunch and The Adventures of Chipman and Biscuit Boy.[4] In the same year, Penkin composed the soundtrack of the video game Jūzaengi: Engetsu Sangokuden; this soundtrack represented Penkin's first collaboration with Nobuo Uematsu.[4] Penkin has continued to collaborate with Uematsu in titles such as Norn9 and Defender's Quest II: Mists of Ruin.[5]

In 2013, Penkin received a Bachelor of Music in Composition and Music Technology at Edith Cowan University's Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. In 2015, Penkin graduated from the Royal College of Music with a Master of Composition degree in Composition for Screen.[6] His studies were supported by a grant from the Tait Memorial Trust as the inaugural Tait Scholar at the Royal College of Music.[7]

In 2016, Penkin collaborated with Kinema Citrus on the Norn9 anime and the Under the Dog original video animation soundtracks.[8] Penkin's relationship with Kinema Citrus continued through to 2017 for the soundtrack of Made in Abyss,[8] winning the 2017 Crunchyroll Anime Award for Best Score with it.[1] In 2018, Penkin composed the score for the video game Florence.[9] Penkin composed the music for Kinema Citrus' anime adaptation of The Rising of the Shield Hero and NetEase's VR game Nostos in 2019.[10] He composed the score for the 2020 anime adaptation of the South Korean webtoon Tower of God.[11] Penkin was working with artist Takashi Murakami on the sequel to the movie Jellyfish Eyes, but the project was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[12] In 2021, Penkin composed the score for "The Village Bride" episode in the Disney+ animated anthology series Star Wars: Visions.[13]

Penkin lived in the United Kingdom for some time,[8] but now lives in Melbourne, Australia.[14]




Year Title Note(s)
2016 Under the Dog [8][15]
Norn9 [8][15]
2017 Made in Abyss Won "Best Score" at the 2nd Crunchyroll Anime Awards[8][15]
2019 The Rising of the Shield Hero Nominated for "Best Score" at the 4th Crunchyroll Anime Awards[15][16]
2020 Made in Abyss: Dawn of the Deep Soul [15]
Tower of God Won "Best Score" at the 5th Crunchyroll Anime Awards[15]
2021 Eden [17]
Star Wars: Visions Episode "The Village Bride"[13]
2022 The Rising of the Shield Hero 2 [18]
Made in Abyss: The Golden City of the Scorching Sun [19]
Legend of Mana: The Teardrop Crystal Composed the opening theme "Tear of Will"[20]
2023 Pokémon: Paldean Winds [21]
The Apothecary Diaries With Satoru Kōsaki and Alisa Okehazama[22]
The Rising of the Shield Hero 3 [23]
2024 Bye Bye, Earth [24]
Spice and Wolf: Merchant Meets the Wise Wolf [25]

Video games

Year Title Note(s)
2011 Jūzaengi: Engetsu Sangokuden With Nobuo Uematsu[4][15]
2012 Defender's Quest: Valley of the Forgotten [15]
2013 Norn9 With Nobuo Uematsu[15]
Deemo Composed "I Race the Dawn"[15]
Leviathan: The Last Defense [15]
2014 Project Phoenix [15]
2015 Implosion: Never Lose Hope Composed cutscenes music[15]
2017 Kieru [8][15]
2018 Florence Nominated at the 15th British Academy Game Awards for music[9][15]
This Is the Police 2 With Ben Matthews[15]
2019 Nostos [10][15]
Rebel Cops With Ben Matthews[15]
2020 Necrobarista [26][27]
2021 Grow: Song of the Evertree [28]
Arknights Composed "Heal the World"[29]
2022 Sin Chronicle With various others[30]
TBA Defender's Quest II: Mists of Ruin [5][31]
Renaine With various others[32]

Concert works

Year Title Note(s)
2013 Blossom Crossroads Perth Symphony Orchestra[33]
Looking for Serenity Perth Chamber Orchestra
Altered Illustrations Perth Chamber Orchestra
Joshua Webster, cimbalom
2014 Atmosphere RCM Student Film Orchestra
Anaïs Laugenie, cello
Changing Feet Tait Memorial Trust Chamber Orchestra
Nicola Crowe, flute
2015 First Blood "And So Forth" Opera Company
Rebecca Hardwick, soprano
2016 Throughtones Greywing Ensemble[36]
Houn Maru Commissioned by Rio Tinto, Perth Symphony Orchestra[37]


  1. ^ a b Trumbore, Dave (26 February 2018). "Crunchyroll Anime Awards Winners Revealed: Who Took Home the Big Prize?". Collider. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  2. ^ Penkin, Kevin (21 May 2018). "Apparently in some places in the world I'm already 26. That's a laugh". Twitter. Retrieved 22 May 2018.
  3. ^ Penkin, Kevin. "Kevin Penkin Long Interview". Made in Abyss (Interview) (in Japanese). Interviewed by Shimpei Yamashita; Hiromitsu Iijima. Kadokawa Corporation. (republished by Sentai Filmworks)
  4. ^ a b c d e f Greening, Chris (27 February 2014). "Kevin Penkin Interview: Writing Soundtracks with Nobuo". VGMO -Video Game Music Online-. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  5. ^ a b Doucet, Lars (2 April 2014). "Nobuo Uematsu to work on Defender's Quest 2". Fortress of Doors. Doucet, Lars. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  6. ^ "Biography". Kevin Penkin. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  7. ^ "Kevin Penkin, Inaugural Tait Scholar at the Royal College of Music – Tait Memorial Trust". 7 November 2013.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g May, Callum (4 October 2017). "Interview: Made in Abyss Composer Kevin Penkin". Anime News Network. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
  9. ^ a b Remington, Kate (21 June 2018). "Kevin Penkin's Intimate, Conversational Soundtrack For 'Florence'". Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  10. ^ a b Penkin, Kevin (22 August 2018). "So, speaking of more to come... honoured to announce I composed the music for my first VR title, @nostosgame Nostos is an VRMMO Sandbox game and the main theme features the incredible singer of Nier Automata, Emi Evans!". @kevinpenkin. Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  11. ^ "Crunchyroll Reveals Tower of God Anime's Video, Cast, Staff". Anime News Network. Retrieved 29 February 2020.
  12. ^ @kevinpenkin (10 July 2020). "ANNOUNCEMENT: I've been working with artist Takashi Murakami on the music for his movie "Jellyfish Eyes 2". Due to Covid-19 the project has been abandoned. Regardless, we worked extremely hard on the music and I hope one day I can share it. It was an honour to work with Murakami" (Tweet). Retrieved 14 July 2020 – via Twitter.
  13. ^ a b Penkin, Kevin [@kevinpenkin] (3 July 2021). "I'm composing for a Star Wars anime. Specifically, an episode of the new Disney+ series "Star Wars Visions", which is a collection of original animated shorts based in the Star Wars universe. Beyond honoured. Please enjoy "The Village Bride" by Kinema Citrus, this September" (Tweet). Archived from the original on 3 July 2021. Retrieved 3 July 2021 – via Twitter.
  14. ^ Penkin, Kevin (9 June 2019). "Less than 2 weeks until I call Melbourne my home. Pretty keen." Twitter. Retrieved 23 July 2020.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r "Credits". Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  16. ^ "Every Crunchyroll Anime Awards 2020 Winner, Including Anime Of The Year". GameSpot. Retrieved 14 June 2022.
  17. ^ Gramuglia, Anthony (14 April 2019). "Netflix Announces Eden Anime From Fullmetal Alchemist Director". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on 15 April 2019. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  18. ^ "The Rising of the Shield Hero Anime's 2nd Season Premieres in 2021". Anime News Network. 4 September 2020. Archived from the original on 5 September 2020. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  19. ^ "Made in Abyss Season 2's English-Subtitled Video Unveils Cast, Staff". Anime News Network. 21 November 2021. Archived from the original on 21 November 2021. Retrieved 21 November 2021.
  20. ^ @kevinpenkin (28 June 2022). "It is beyond crazy to be able to announce that I am the composer of the Opening Theme to the 『聖剣伝説 Legend of Mana -The Teardrop Crystal』anime, with vocals & lyrics by the amazing Hayami Saori (@hayami_official)" (Tweet). Retrieved 4 July 2022 – via Twitter.
  21. ^ 『ポケモンSV』オリジナルWEBアニメ『放課後のブレス』は9月6日より全4話で公開! 物語や若山詩音さん演じるオハラなどのキャラ情報が解禁. Pash! Plus [ja] (in Japanese). 9 August 2023. Archived from the original on 10 August 2023. Retrieved 10 August 2023.
  22. ^ "The Apothecary Diaries Novels About Palace Intrigue Get 2023 TV Anime". Anime News Network. 15 February 2023. Archived from the original on 16 February 2023. Retrieved 16 February 2023.
  23. ^ "The Rising of the Shield Hero Anime Season 3's Teaser Unveils October Debut". Anime News Network. 7 April 2023. Archived from the original on 7 April 2023. Retrieved 7 April 2023.
  24. ^ 「ばいばい、アース」ラブラック=ベル役はファイルーズあい、制作にライデンフィルム. Comic Natalie (in Japanese). Natasha, Inc. 14 October 2023. Archived from the original on 14 October 2023. Retrieved 14 October 2023.
  25. ^ "New Spice & Wolf TV Anime Reveals 2024 Debut, Returning Cast". Anime News Network. 29 June 2023. Archived from the original on 29 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.
  26. ^ Mejias, Nicole (27 November 2018). "Composer Kevin Penkin on Symphonic Metal and Flamenco Music Influences in The Rising of the Shield Hero, and More!". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  27. ^ "Route 59 Games press kit". Archived from the original on 22 July 2020. Retrieved 23 July 2020.
  28. ^ Romano, Sal (27 August 2021). "Grow: Song of the Evertree launches November 16". Gematsu. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  29. ^ @kevinpenkin (21 December 2021). "I wrote music for Arknights!!! Beyond honoured to work with the irreplaceable @SarahAlainn on the song "Heal the World". Feel free to check below" (Tweet). Retrieved 10 January 2022 – via Twitter.
  30. ^ Romano, Sal (1 October 2021). "Sega announces 'choose your own ending RPG' Sin Chronicle for iOS, Android". Gematsu. Retrieved 3 October 2021.
  31. ^ "Defender's Quest II - Core Team". Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  32. ^ Romano, Sal (18 September 2018). "High-paced platformer Renaine coming to Switch, PC". Gematsu. Retrieved 26 October 2021.
  33. ^ Flavell Neist, Carol (13 March 2013). "Symphony by the Lake". ArtsHub Australia. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  34. ^ Parry, Mike (18 December 2013). "Beethoven Bratwurst and Beer". ArtsHub Australia. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  35. ^ "Changing Feet – A musical exploration of changing pace". Tait Memorial Trust. 30 September 2014. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  36. ^ Trainer, Adam (10 May 2016). "GreyWing Ensemble". Western Australian New Music Archive. Retrieved 5 June 2022.
  37. ^ "Tait Awardee, Kevin Penkin composes original score to celebrate Rio Tinto's 50 years of iron ore mining". Tait Memorial Trust. 13 November 2016. Retrieved 5 June 2022.