“JOHN WILLIAMS: MAESTRO OF THE MOVIES”
August 29 & 30, 2014, Hollywood Bowl, CA
The Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by JOHN WILLIAMS
Cal State Fullerton University Singers
Los Angeles Children’s Chorus
Robert DeMaine, cello
Bing Wang, violin
Seth MacFarlane, special guest
Beloved actor Robin Williams was found dead on Monday, police reported. He was 63. The apparent cause of death was suicide, authorities said. According to his publicist, Williams had been battling severe depression. – Full article at The Huffington Post
From his most recent Oscar-nominated score for the film adaptation of “The Book Thief,” John Williams led the Pops in a haunting, lyrical theme depicting how Liesel, a young girl living with foster parents in Germany during the Holocaust, “borrowed” books to share with a Jewish refugee being sheltered by the family. The eight-minute segment represents the composer at his non-blockbuster best.
“Tanglewood has long been and will continue to be, the spiritual home of Leonard Bernstein,” Williams told an audience gathered at Ozawa Hall minutes after one of the fiercest storms of the summer swept across the campus. – Full article and photos at The Berkshire Eagle
On July 21, John Williams, Gustavo Dudamel and Gustavo Santaolalla gathered at Los Angeles’s Bing Theater for the Academy event “Behind the Score: The Art of the Film Composer,” where the trio discussed topics such as musical moments in film that have inspired their work, the process of creating a film score, and the director-composer collaboration. Three of Williams’ moments are now available on YouTube:
Ladies and gentlemen, we can finally answer, “Who’s the Greatest Film Composer of All Time”? It’s John Williams. Yes, the No. 1 choice for Steven Spielberg and George Lucas is apparently also our readers’ top pick. Surprisingly, the 82-year-old composer came out on top after a hard, hard round that involved both Ennio Morricone and Philip Glass. Our hats are off to you. – Full article
English composer Ken Thorne, who wrote the scores for Superman II and Superman III using John Williams’ original material as well as his own compositions, died on July 9 at age 90. Thorne previously worked with Richard Lester on The Beatles film Help! and Stephen Sondheim’s musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He also wrote the original score for the Pink Panther sequel Inspector Clouseau. His work on the Superman sequels was released in 2008 as part of Superman: The Music, a 8-CD box set containing the complete original scores from Superman to IV.
The official page for Gloria Cheng’s CD and film project featuring John Williams’ “Conversations” for piano solo is now available on Facebook. The album, which will be released on February 10, 2015, will also include new piano works by Bruce Broughton, Don Davis, Michael Giacchino, Randy Newman and Alexandre Desplat. A documentary film on the project will be made available on YouTube shortly prior to the CD release.
On July 4th, John Williams conducted a new arrangement for orchestra and chorus of “The Star Spangled Banner” to mark its 200th anniversary, as part of the “A Capitol Fourth” Independence Day celebration concert.
Williams lead the National Symphony Orchestra, the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, the Joint Armed Forces Chorus and the Choral Arts Society of Washington in performing the new arrangement.
The video includes Williams’ introduction and the beginning of his “Liberty Fanfare”, which he conducted right after the National Anthem.