1 This is the cover of Marvin Makes Music, a delightful childrens' book!
2 Marvin was born in Manhattan to Viennese-born parents. His father was an accordionist and bandleader.
3 Marvin was tuned into the sounds around him at a very early age. He was always listening.
4 It became apparent that Marvin was a child prodigy, and, by age five, he began mimicking the piano music he heard on the radio.
5 As composer and conductor, Hamlisch was one of only eleven artists who have been awarded an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. Marvin won three Oscars, four Grammys, four Emmys, and a Tony.
6 He was also one of only two people to have won those four prizes and a Pulitzer Prize - the other being Richard Rodgers. Hamlisch also won two Golden Globes. So very impressive!
7 For Broadway he wrote the music for his groundbreaking show, A Chorus Line, which received the Pulitzer Prize, as well as They’re Playing Our Song, The Goodbye Girl, and Sweet Smell of Success.
8 He was the composer of more than forty motion picture scores including his Oscar-winning score and song for The Way We Were and his adaptation of Scott Joplin’s music for The Sting, for which he received a third Oscar.
9 His prolific output of scores for films include original compositions and/or musical adaptations for Sophie’s Choice, Ordinary People, The Swimmer, Three Men and a Baby, Ice Castles, Take the Money and Run, Bananas, Save the Tiger, and his latest effort The Informant!, starring Matt Damon and directed by Steven Soderbergh.
10 Marvin was Musical Director and arranger of Barbra Streisand’s 1994 concert tour of the U.S. and England, as well as of the television special, Barbra Streisand: The Concert, for which he received two of his Emmys.
11 Marvin held the position of principal pops conductor for the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Pasadena Symphony and Pops, Seattle Symphony, San Diego Symphony, The Buffalo Philharmonic and The National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C.
12 At the time of his passing he was working on a film project about Liberace, starring Michael Douglas and Matt Damon and directed by Steven Soderbergh.
13 With all of his accolades, it shouldn't surprise anyone that at six years of age, Marvin became one of the youngest students ever accepted into the Juilliard School of Music.
14 His first job was as a rehearsal pianist for Funny Girl with Barbra Streisand. Shortly after that, he was hired by producer Sam Spiegel to play piano at Spiegel's parties. This connection led to his first film score, The Swimmer.
15 His favorite musicals growing up were My Fair Lady, Gypsy, West Side Story, and Bye Bye Birdie.
16 Quite sadly, Marvin Hamlisch died on August 6, 2012, in Los Angeles, California at age 68, following a short illness.
17 The Associated Press described him as having written "some of the best-loved and most enduring songs and scores in movie history".
18 Barbra Streisand released a statement praising Hamlisch, stating it was "his brilliantly quick mind, his generosity and delicious sense of humor that made him a delight to be around".
19 The head of the Pasadena Symphony and Pops commented that Hamlisch had "left a very specific ... original mark on American music and added to the great American songbook with works he himself composed".
20 On August 8th, at 8PM, the marquee lights of the 40 Broadway theaters were dimmed for one minute in tribute to Hamlisch, a posthumous honor traditionally accorded to those considered to have made significant contributions to the theater arts.