Judith Gruber-Stitzer

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Judith Gruber-Stitzer
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New York City
Alma materUniversity of Copenhagen
OccupationFilm Score Composer

Judith Gruber-Stitzer is a bilingual (English/French) Canadian/American film score composer based in Montreal, Canada. Her diverse portfolio encompasses a wide array of creative endeavors, including composing for fiction and documentary films, mini-series, live action shorts, features, animated shorts, cartoon series, as well as theatrical and dance productions.

She is best known for her scores for award winning films produced by the National Film Board of Canada. Notable among these films scored by her is the Cannes Film Festival Short Film Palme d’Or winner, When the Day Breaks which was also nominated for an Oscar[1], as were the films Animal Behaviour and Wild Life. An Emmy nomination was awarded to the animated documentary Flawed.[2]

Gruber-Stitzer's live actions scores include Basements, a feature film directed by Robert Altman,[3] comprising two short films: The Dumb Waiter[4] and The Room[5]. More recently, her scores can be heard in the sci-fi adventure feature Polaris, as well as the documentaries Maboungou: Being In The World and Above the Drowning Sea, directed by Nicolas Zavaglia and René Balcer respectively.

Her commercial animation work includes: The Most Magnificent Thing,[6] a Nelvana animated special featuring Whoopi Goldberg; Zevo-3, a Nickelodeon action series; the Cartoon Network half-hour special Penguins Behind Bars[7] and the CN pilot Spang Ho.

Early life and education

Born in New York City, she studied piano and mandolin. While enrolled as a student at The College of New Jersey, she spent a semester abroad in Denmark at the University of Copenhagen and received a B.A. in 1975 in English education.[8]


After completing her college education, Gruber-Stitzer moved to Montreal, Quebec, where she began playing in French bands that included Marie Savard’s folk group La Jaserie and WondeurBrass, a musique actuelle brass ensemble.[9][10]

Gruber-Stitzer has garnered significant recognition for her soundtracks produced for the National Film Board of Canada. Her score for the distinguished National Film Board animation director Caroline Leaf's film Two Sisters, launched her career scoring animated shorts for the Oscar nominated directors Wendy Tilby & Amanda Forbis, Janet Perlman, Paul Driessen, Chris Hinton, Georges Schwizgebel and Oscar winning directors Alison Snowden & David Fine, and Joan Gratz. She has also worked extensively scoring documentaries both within the NFB and the private sector.[11]

She was invited to become a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2016.[12]

Personal life

Gruber-Stitzer is married to animation director and children’s book author Janet Perlman.


  • One Minute Mistake (2023)
  • Girl with the Red Beret (2023)
  • Maboungou: Being In The World (2022)
  • Polaris (2022)
  • Evan's Drum (2021)
  • No Leaders Please (2021)
  • Darwin's Notebook (2020)
  • Two Shoes (2020)
  • One-Minute Memoir (2020)
  • Balakrishna (2019)
  • Ice Breakers (2019)
  • Conviction (2019)
  • Newspaper News (2019)
  • Turbine (2018)
  • Freaks of Nurture (2018)
  • Animal Behaviour (2018)
  • I Like Girls (2016)
  • Monsieur Pug (2014)
  • Mary & Myself (2013)
  • Twinkle Toes (2012)
  • Kaspar (2012)
  • Wild Life (2011)
  • Zevo-3 (TV series) (2010-2011)
  • Sorry Film Not Ready (2010)
  • Hot Seat (2008)
  • Come Again in Spring (2007)
  • Invasion of the Space Lobsters (2005)
  • The Colour of Memory: Conversations with Guido Molinari (2005)
  • Edith and Michel (2004)
  • L'homme sans ombre (2004)
  • Les origines du SIDA (2004)
  • Harry Gulkin: Red Dawn on Main Street (2004)
  • Glasses (2002)
  • A Monster's Calling (2001)
  • Understanding the Law: The Coat (2001)
  • Bully Dance (2000)
  • Understanding the Law: The Worm (2000)
  • Working Like Crazy (1999)
  • When the Day Breaks (1999)
  • The Lighthouse (1997)
  • The Petticoat Expeditions, Part Three: Countess of Aberdeen (1997)
  • The Petticoat Expeditions, Part Two: Frances Hopkins (1997)
  • The Petticoat Expeditions, Part One: Anna Jameson (1997)
  • Circles (1997)
  • The Petticoat Expeditions (1997)
  • Plumbum Conundrum (1996)
  • Asking Different Questions: Women and Science (1996)
  • Dinner for Two (1996)
  • The Pinnacle and the Poet (1995)
  • Why? (1995)
  • By Woman's Hand (1994)
  • Les mots perdus (1993)
  • A Balancing Act (1992)
  • The Glass Ceiling (1992)
  • Toward Intimacy (1992)
  • Two Sisters (1991)
  • No Time to Stop (1990)
  • Eileen's Bag (1990)
  • Just Before the Dawn (1990)
  • On a pus les parents qu'on avait (1989)
  • 15th Anniversary (1989)
  • The Great Wall of Tradition (1988)
  • Singulier pluriel (1988)
  • L'espoir violent (1988)
  • Worth Every Minute (1987)
  • The Room (1987)
  • The Dumb Waiter (1987)
  • Moving On (1986)
  • Si jamais tu pars (1986)
  • J'osais pas rien dire (1986)


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