This past weekend I joined composer Howard Shore onstage at Heinz Hall for a unique concert experience with the Pittsburgh Symphony. Between pieces conducted by Ludwig Wicki, Howard and I talked about his career; his collaboration with such celebrated directors as Martin Scorsese, Peter Jackson and David Cronenberg; and how The Lord of the Rings changed his life. The concerts included the world premiere of his The Hobbit: Four Movements for Symphony Orchestra, a 30-minute distillation of many of the themes and motifs from his scores for Jackson’s recent Hobbit trilogy of films. Along the way we got to hear such classic Shores scores as The Fly, Ed Wood (with original theremin soloist Lydia Kavina), The Silence of the Lambs, Hugo and (of course) music from Lord of the Rings. Here is a review, which nicely summarizes the proceedings. (Photo courtesy @ShelaghSings)
I was thrilled to be able to put Elmer Bernstein on the front page of the Los Angeles Times‘ Calendar section. He was being honored by the Motion Picture Academy for his half-century of composing for movies. It was a great year for Elmer; he was celebrated around the world. This was a big feature I wrote that chronicled his career (at least, as much as you can do in 2,400 words). Interviews were conducted with Elmer, Gregory Peck, John Landis, Martin Scorsese, James Newton Howard and Leonard Maltin.