Leon Lacey, musical genius, composer, orchestra arranger, music producer, and music editor, scores music on the upcoming Clive Davis-produced biopic/musical about the life of the late iconic pop star Whitney Houston, I Wanna Dance With Somebody. The Sony Pictures release is directed by Kasi Lemons and stars Naomi Ackie as Whitney Houston. The film will hit theaters on December 23, just in time for Christmas.
The one to watch in 2023, New York-raised, Los Angeles-based Lacey was presented with the opportunity to orchestrate some of Whitney’s biggest songs for the movie by Grammy Award-winning super producer Rodney “Dark Child” Jerkins. Lacey said, “Rodney Jerkins asked me to remake/reproduce a hit song of Whitney Houston, then a few months later, he called me to compose orchestrations for a few more hit songs that are featured in the movie. I had five days to compose, score, then be flown to Nashville to record at Oceanway Studio.
I’m honored that he called me to co-produce or compose orchestra scores for different projects. As well as the legendary Wyclef Jean throughout the year.”
Lacey has worked his magic across genres and platforms. He served as the music editor for the upcoming Blair Underwood indie thriller, Viral, and seasons four and five of Lena Waithe’s hit Showtime TV series The Chi. Additionally, the in-demand creative is the music editor for an upcoming film starring Wesley Snipes, Kevin Hart, Tiffany Haddish, and Faison Love.
On the fast track to success since making Los Angeles his home, just before the pandemic shut the city down, Lacey was chosen to work with the L.A. Philharmonic Orchestra. “On March 8, 2020, the L.A. Philharmonic produced an amazing show featuring vocalist and actress Yolanda Adams. Ms. Adams informed the LA Philharmonic that I was her new Orchestra Arranger and requested they hire me to score a 60-minute show. I had nine days to turn this project around and get all the arrangements and scoring finished and turned into Disney Hall/ LA Philharmonic,” said Lacey.
Having moved to the City of Angels to be closer to clients, to network, and at the advice of Cory Rooney, who introduced him to Michael Jackson’s nephews of the group 3T (Michael’s brother Tito’s sons), Lacey got his first major break 13 years ago as a composer for a well-known vocalist at the Lincoln Center in New York City. That set him on his current course as a highly sought-after composer and orchestrator who makes miracles happen quickly for clients with quick turnarounds. “Clients call me because they know I can get it done in a short amount of time,” said Lacey.
As an African American composer and music editor, Lacey is on a mission to score more movies and films centered around black life and culture. He abides by the philosophy that your life is orchestrated.
Leon Lacey is thankful as he prepares for greater success that is sure to follow the release of I Wanna Dance With Somebody. The head of Never Say I Can’t Productions, LLC and 5 Towns College graduate remains grounded and is most proud of being a Christian husband and new father; Lacey said, “I’m also very proud of the ability to daily practice important and beneficial disciplines, and the divine and professional relationship I have with an industry veteran. She has partnered with me to work with high-profile clients such as Iyanla Vanzant.”