The first trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens has landed, but what about John Williams' score?
John Williams (1932-present) is the most prolific and widely honoured living composer of film music and the most Oscar-nominated man alive.
Life and Music
- He was born in New York but moved to Los Angeles with his family when he was 16. He attended UCLA and studied composition with Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco.
- After service in the Air Force, Williams returned to New York to attend Juilliard where he studied piano with Rosina Lhevinne. He also worked as a jazz pianist in both clubs and on recordings.
- Williams moved back to Los Angeles and began his career in film studios working with such composers as Bernard Herrmann, Alfred Newman, and Franz Waxman.
- He went on to write music for many television programmes in the 1960s, winning two Emmys for his work.
- Beginning with his first screen credit, for Because They're Young, Williams' career as a composer of film scores gathered steady momentum.
- In 1974 Steven Spielberg came to John Williams after being moved by his score to The Reivers to score Sugarland Express. It was the beginning of one of the greatest film composer/director collaborations ever.
- His first Oscar was for his adaption of the music for the screen version of Fiddler on the Roof. In 1976 he received his second for Jaws. In 1978, an Oscar for Star Wars followed in a competition that included his score for Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Oscars were also awarded for E.T. and the haunting Schindler's List soundtrack.
- Williams has composed the music and served as music director for more than seventy-five films.
- In addition to his film music, Williams has written many concert pieces including two symphonies, a bassoon concerto, a 'cello concerto, concertos for flute and violin, a trumpet concerto, and concertos for clarinet and tuba.
Did you know?
Williams has received almost 40 Academy Award nominations.
John Williams: 15 facts about the great composer
From writing the world's best-loved soundtracks - such as Star Wars and Harry Potter - to conducting the Boston Pops, John Williams is one of today's musical giants.
John Williams: Ten Best Movie Soundtracks
He's the most successful movie composer of all time - but which ten of his soundtracks are the best?
The new Jurassic World trailer features a stripped-down version of Williams' classic theme
We take a look at the winners of the Outstanding Contribution to Music and Lifetime Achievement awards from over the years
John Williams talks exclusively to Classic FM's Tommy Pearson
Find out more about John Williams's Schindler's List and listen to different recordings and download your favourite.
John Williams proves just how scary two repeated notes can be in this ominous soundtrack.
Dubstep, metal and creepy folk versions of one of John Williams' greatest themes
Top Williams Pieces
Powered by Facebook