Oscar-winning film composer and symphony orchestra conductor André Previn died Thursday at his home in Manhattan, his manager confirmed to the New York Times. He was 89.
The former enfant terrible of motion picture scoring and accomplished jazz pianist was honored with four Academy Awards. He won the first two, for best scoring of a musical picture (a category that has since been retired), for “Gigi” and “Porgy & Bess” in 1958 and 1959, respectively, while still in his 20s. He then won two for best adaptation or treatment (another retired sub-category) in 1963 and 1964 for “Irma la Douce” and “My Fair Lady,” respectively.
John Williams on André Previn:
“In everything he did, he brought a keen intelligence, sharp wit and an array of talents that was formidable,” said Williams, who knew Previn since they were teenagers. “He was comfortably at home with Gene Kelly, Miles Davis, Mozart and Mahler — a true renaissance man. And we have been fortunate indeed to have shared the light he brought to this sometimes dreary world for nearly 90 years.”