Marvin Hamlisch was a stage and film composer who made songs for A Chorus Line. He died at age 68 in Los Angeles after collapsing from a brief illness. This is according to a statement from his family. He was one of the most decorated composers in the entertainment industry. He won three Academy Awards, a Tony Award, a Pulitzer Prize for drama, and four Emmy Awards.
He was still active a couple of weeks ago. He was the lead conductor of the Pasadena Pops, which he conducted last July 21 at the Los Angeles Arboretum. He was the emcee during the salute to Cole Porter, where he shared jokes with the audience. He ended the show with a medley of musical chestnuts with Michael Feinstein. As an encore, Feinstein sang Hamslisch’s The Way We Were.
Hamslisch made his mark in the musical theater industry with A Chorus Line, which was first performed at New York’s Public Theater in 1975 before it transferred to Broadway. It ran for almost 15 years. He wrote the music for the show and worked with lyricist Edward Kleban.
The musical is about a group of aspiring theatrical performers who are going through auditions. It features memorable songs such as One, and I Hope I Get It. It has received several Tonys and a Pulitzer for drama award.
Hamlisch also did scores for They’re Playing Our Song, The Goodbye Girl, and Sweet Smell of Success. His recent work includes the score for the stage adaptation of The Nutty Professor, which recently opened in Nashville. He was also supposed to work on a new Broadway musical called Gotta Dance.
Hamlisch also wrote music for movies including The Spy Who Loved Me, The Way We Were, and Sophie’s Choice. He teamed up with director Steven Soderbergh for The Informant as well as the upcoming movie Behind the Candelabra, which is a biopic of Liberace.