Composer Marvin Hamlisch has died
(CNS) – Marvin Hamlisch, a highly prolific Oscar-winning composer best known for the Tony Award-winning “A Chorus Line” and the scores to the films “The Sting” and “The Way We Were,” has died in Los Angeles, his family said today. He was 68.
Hamlisch, the man behind some 40 film scores, collapsed after a brief illness and died on Monday, a family representative said in a statement reported by the New York Times. No other details were immediately revealed.
Hamlisch was the winner of three Oscars, four Grammys, four Emmys and the Tony — as well as a Pulitzer Prize. He is one of only 12 people to have won Emmys, Grammys, Oscars, and a Tony, and one of only two to have won those four prizes plus a Pulitzer.
His work included the Oscar-winning score and song for “The Way We Were,” the score for “The Sting,” and musical contributions to “Sophie’s Choice,” “Ordinary People,” “The Spy Who Loved Me” “Ice Castles” and “The Informant.”
As recently as last month, Hamlisch was working on a musical adaptation of the Jerry Lewis comedy “The Nutty Professor,” for which he wrote the score, according to the New York Times.
Hamlisch’s official website reported that he held the title of principal pops conductor for the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, the Seattle Symphony, the San Diego Symphony, and the Pasadena Symphony and Pops. He was named principal conductor in Pasadena in 2009 and only last month the contract was extended two years, with an option to extend his tenure until 2015.
Pasadena Symphony and Pops President Melinda Shea told the Los Angeles Times today that Hamlisch’s death was unexpected, and she knew of no serious health problems.
“He’d pulled a back muscle recently, but there was nothing serious,” Shea told the newspaper. “He had some really wonderful new endeavors. It’s just such a tragedy that this has happened, when he was still so young.”
Funeral plans were pending.