Marvin Hamlisch, Oscar-Winning Film Composer, Dies At Age 68

By Sean O'Connell 2012-08-07 08:46:58discussion comments
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A moment of silence seems inappropriate for the great film composer Marvin Hamlisch, who passed away in Los Angeles at the age of 68. The three-time Oscar winner contributed so many memorable scores to such beloved Hollywood features as Ice Castles, The Sting, The Way We Were and A Chorus Line that it seems more appropriate to play one of his soundtracks in honor of his dominant spirit.

Very few details were made available regarding Hamlisch’s death, which was reported on People.com early Tuesday morning. The site confirms that the composer suffered “a brief illness” but didn’t confirm the cause of Hamlisch’s death.

So instead, let’s celebrate his life. Known by many as “the people’s composer,” Hamlisch wrote more than 40 film scores and contributed theme songs for countless television programs, including Beacon Hill and Hot L Baltimore. Hamlisch penned the score for the 1977 Bond thriller The Spy Who Loved Me (with Roger Moore in the lead role). He regularly wrote music for the Academy Awards telecast, and even composed original music for the television special Los Angeles 1984: Games of the XXIII Olympiad.

Hamlisch became such a household name over the course of his career that his personal relationship with lyricist Carole Bayer Sager even inspired the 1979 Broadway musical They’re Playing Our Song, for which Hamlisch composed an original score. In addition to his three Oscars, Hamlisch was awarded four Grammys, four Emmys, three Golden Globes, one Tony and one Pulitzer.

Hamlisch stayed active until the end. His most recent movie score was for Steve Soderbergh’s off-kilter but wildly funny Matt Damon comedy The Informant! It would be a great soundtrack to listen to today, in honor of Hamlisch’s outstanding body of work. You can check it out on Amazon here.
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