Legendary film composer Elmer Bernstein will receive the ultimate musical tribute at the Royal Albert Hall next year, the 95th anniversary of his birth.
The writer of some of the movies’ most memorable themes – including The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape and To Kill a Mockingbird – will be celebrated in a brand new show, Elmer Bernstein: 50 Years of Film Music, featuring the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and presented by the composer’s son, Peter.
He will be joined on stage at this European premiere by John Landis, whose seven classic films with the composer included The Blues Brothers, An American Werewolf in London and Trading Places.
Lucy Noble, Director of Events at the Royal Albert Hall, said: “Elmer Bernstein is beloved across the world for his unforgettable movie music, from the rousing, triumphant themes of The Magnificent Seven and The Great Escape to the tender, touching scores he wrote for the likes of Far From Heaven and Martin Scorsese’s The Age of Innocence.
“This European premiere will bring his work to life like never before, with a diverse selection of classic music, rare video clips from the family archive, and the perfect host in acclaimed conductor Peter Bernstein – who’ll share stories of his father’s life, and lead one of the world’s finest orchestras as they perform the very best of Elmer Bernstein.”
Peter Bernstein said: “I’m delighted to be hosting this very special, one-off show at one of the world’s most legendary concert venues. The chance to share both my father’s incredible music and my favourite memories of him is a dream come true, and I hope you’ll join me in June for an amazing night, half-a-century in the making.”
Elmer Bernstein: 50 Years of Film Music, coming to the Royal Albert Hall on Sunday 18 June 2017, is a unique career retrospective combining the legendary composer’s greatest hits with stories from his life, and a treasure trove of archive materials. This European premiere will also include the first ever public performance of some rare Bernstein pieces.
Born in New York in 1922, Bernstein arrived in Hollywood in 1951 and – after beating blacklisting by the notorious House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) – became one of the most famous, respected and popular film composers of his generation.
Across a 50-year career, he composed more than 150 movie scores and nearly 80 for television, with everything from blockbusters (The Ten Commandments) to trendsetting social dramas (a hypnotic jazz score for the trendsetting addiction drama, The Man with a Golden Arm) and family films (The Amazing Mr. Blunden).
He won an Oscar in 1967 for his score to Thoroughly Modern Millie, starring Julie Andrews, and scooped Golden Globes for his work on To Kill a Mockingbird and Hawaii. He is one of only five composers recognised twice on the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 best movie scores, with The Magnificent Seven (8th) and *_To Kill a Mockingbird_*(17th).