Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Remembering Elmer Bernstein

Elmer Bernstein was born in New York City, New York on April 4, 1922. His name in music continues to be synonymous with creativity, versatility and longevity. The year 2001 marked his 50th anniversary as a feature film composer who wrote music for over 200 major film and television scores, the only composer to have achieved such longevity. He practiced his craft for the past half century, gracing virtually all creative media with his work. Additional honors included Lifetime Achievement awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), The Society for the Preservation of Film Music, the USA, Woodstock, Santa Barbara, Newport Beach and Flanders International Film Festivals and the Foundation for a Creative America. In 1996, Bernstein was honored with a star on Hollywood Boulevard. In 1999, he received an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Five Towns College in New York State and was honored by the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. Bernstein again was honored by ASCAP with its marquee Founders Award in 2001 and with the NARAS Governors Award in June 2004. Among his many film scores were compositions for 26 westerns and among them were 3 scores for Euro-westerns, “Return of the Seven” (1966), “Guns of the Magnificent Seven” (1968) and “Cannon for Cordoba” (1970). Bernstein died on August 18, 2004 in Ojai, California. He is the father of composer Peter Bernstein [1955- ] and director, screenwriter, actor Gregory Bernstein [1955- ]. Today we remember Elmer Bernstein on what would have been his 90th birthday.

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