Jerry Goldsmith’s 90th Birthday Celebration


February 7, 2019 – An evening with distinguished directors Joe Dante, Phil Alden Robinson, composer and conductor David Newman, Goldsmith scoring mixer Bruce Botnick, and long time Varese Sarabande producer Robert Townson. Moderated by composer and Goldsmith orchestrator Mark McKenzie. Join us to celebrate the man, his music, his legacy and his 90th birthday.

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Oscar® and Emmy® winning composer Jerry Goldsmith has long been considered one of Hollywood’s most respected and admired creators of music for motion pictures and television.  The composer of such classic scores as Chinatown, Patton, Planet of the Apes, The Sand Pebbles, A Patch of Blue, Poltergeist, Basic Instinct, Papillon, Rambo, Rudy, Gremlins, Mulan, and L.A. Confidential, Goldsmith was sought-after by filmmakers, acclaimed by critics, and adored by the Hollywood music community.

He received 18 Academy Award® nominations, winning the Oscar® in 1976 for his powerful orchestral and choral score for The Omen. Two of the American Film Institute’s top 25 film scores of all time are by Goldsmith: Chinatown and Planet of the Apes. Goldsmith was nominated seven times for an Emmy® and won five Emmys® for his television music, including the landmark miniseries QB VII (1975) and Masada (1981), the TV-movies The Red Pony (1973) and Babe (1975), and the theme for Star Trek: Voyager (1995). He also received nine Golden Globe® nominations for his film scores and seven Grammy®nominations for the soundtracks of his various TV and movie scores.

Goldsmith’s music is played virtually every hour of every day around the world. This is in part due to his many contributions to big and small screen incarnations of the legendary Star Trek. He scored five of the movies for the franchise, and his heraldic theme for Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979) became the well-known signature for the long running TV series, Star Trek: The Next Generation.

During his career in Hollywood which spanned over 50 years, Goldsmith composed the music for nearly 200 films, over a dozen iconic TV themes, and another 20 TV movies and miniseries. No composer was more respected by fellow practitioners of his craft (“he scares the hell out of us,” an admiring Henry Mancini once said) – as much for his unerring dramatic instincts as his innovative and even groundbreaking application of many different musical sounds and styles.

Jerry Goldsmith was born Febrary 10th, 1929 in Los Angeles, California. Classically trained, he studied piano and composition from a young age and was, from the time he was a teenager, determined to write music for movies. After studying at both USC and Los Angeles City College, he went to work at CBS, which employed him as a composer for radio and TV throughout the 1950s. His first feature film score was written in 1957, although he continued to work in TV through the 1960s and early 1970s. For television, he composed scores and familiar themes including Dr. Kildare, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Hollywood Television Theater (PBS), and The Waltons, as well as scoring episodes of classic series including The Twilight Zone, and Gunsmoke.

In addition to his busy film and TV schedule, Jerry Goldsmith also composed for concert halls. His symphonic works include a cantata, Christus Apollo (1969) with words by Ray Bradbury, narrated by Charlton Heston and later by Sir Anthony Hopkins; Music for Orchestra (1971), commissioned by the St. Louis Symphony, and Fireworks: A Celebration of Los Angeles (1999), commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Immediately in response to the attack of 9/11, Jerry Goldsmith composed an in memoriam.The elegy, September 11, 2001 was performed at the Hollywood Bowl just days after the tragedy.

Notably, in 1998, he was commissioned by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to create an anthem for its annual awards ceremony. Goldsmith’s Fanfare for Oscardebuted at the 70th annual Academy Awards and is still heard every year during Oscar telecasts.

Worldwide, Jerry Goldsmith conducted major orchestras, performing concerts of his music. In the United States, orchestras he conducted included the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington D.C., and the New York Filmharmonic Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. Internationally, orchestras he conducted included the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Madrid Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Seville Orchestra and Japan’s Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra.

Goldsmith received many honors during his lifetime, including Variety’s American Music Legend Award (1995); an honorary doctorate from Boston’s Berklee School of Music (1990); lifetime achievement awards from the American Society of Music Arrangers and Composers (ASMAC 1990), and the Society for the Preservation of Film Music (1993); two governors’ awards from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS 1994, 1999); and an honorary membership in London’s Royal Academy of Music (2003). In addition to these accolades, Jerry Goldsmith is immortalized with a statuette in his likeness awarded at Spain’s International Film Music Festival. Each year for the past decade, the festival’s highest honor, “the Jerry,” is given to an individual for excellence in the art of film music. In 2017, Jerry Goldsmith was honored posthumously with the 2,611th Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Giving back to the community that nurtured him and launched his career, Goldsmith began teaching in the 1990s; as the instructor of the Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television course at the University of Southern California, and then also as a Regents Lecturer in the Department of Music at the University of California at Los Angeles. He became a Visiting Professor at UCLA, teaching a yearly composition class. Additionally, in a mentoring capacity, he conducted the Young Musicians Foundation Orchestra, the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra, and the Disney Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra.

Several college scholarship funds bear his name, including the Jerry & Carol Goldsmith Music Scholarship at Los Angeles City College, and two fully endowed scholarships for composition at UCLA: the BMI / Jerry Goldsmith Film Scoring Scholarship and the Jerry Goldsmith Scholarship Fund for Film Music Composition. There is also a Jerry Goldsmith Memorial Fund for Cancer Research at the Tower Cancer Research Foundation in Los Angeles.

In the days following his death in 2004, the beloved composer was eulogized on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives with the following tribute: “Jerry Goldsmith leaves behind a distinguished repertoire of outstanding and memorable film scores and television themes that are as recognizable as they are innovative.” “His versatility and genius” were cited and Jerry Goldsmith was declared “a national treasure!”

Bruce Botnick, Recording Engineer and Music Producer, recorded well over 100 movies for Jerry Goldsmith. In addition, he has recorded numerous scores for David Newman, Quincy Jones, Alan Menken, James Newton Howard, John Williams, and Hans Zimmer.

Some of his credits include: Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Total Recall, Basic Instinct, Rudy, Aladdin, Beauty and The Beast, The Lion King, E.T., The Color Purple, Poltergeist, and Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom. Bruce was also the music producer and recording engineer for The Doors, Steve Perry, Frank Zappa, Eddie Money, and The Beach Boys’ “Pet Sounds” and “Good Vibrations.”

Joe Dante’s now legendary The Movie Orgy brought him to the attention of Roger Corman for whom Joe co-directed Hollywood Blvd., with Allan Arkush. His solo feature credits include: The Howling, It’s a Good Life (Twilight Zone: The Movie segment), Gremlins,  Explorers, The ‘Burbs, Gremlins 2: The New Batch, Matinee, Small Soldiers,Looney Tunes Back in Action, The Hole 3D, and Burying the Ex. 

Dante’s television credits include: Amazing Stories, Twilight Zone, Police Squad! Night Visions, Picture Windows, Runaway Daughters, The Second Civil War, CSI: New York, Masters of Horror (Homecoming and The Screwfly Solution) Hawaii 5-0, The Witches of East End, Salem, MacGuyver, and the pilot for Eerie, Indiana. Dante co-created and produces Trailers from Hell and its podcast The Movies That Made Me. He has been honored with awards and career retrospectives at film festivals, museums and cinematheques around the world.

Writer-director Phil Alden Robinson was born in Long Beach, New York, and graduated Union College in Schenectady, New York with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. He received an Honorary Doctorate of letters from Union College in 1996. Phil’s credits include All Of Me, starring Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin (1984) – Writer, In The Mood, starring Patrick Dempsey, Beverly D’Angelo and Talia Balsam (1987) – Writer / Director, Field Of Dreams, starring Kevin Costner, James Earl Jones and Burt Lancaster (1989) – Writer / Director, Sneakers, starring Robert Redford, Sidney Poitier, Dan Aykroyd, Mary McDonnell, River Phoenix, David Strathairn and Ben Kingsley (1992) – Co-writer / Director, Freedom Song, a TNT movie about the Civil Rights movement, starring Danny Glover and Vondie Curtis Hall (2000) – Co-Executive Producer / Co-writer / Director, Band Of Brothers (Ep. 1), produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks (2001) – Director, The Sum Of All Fears, starring Ben Affleck and Morgan Freeman (2002) – Director, The Angriest Man In Brooklyn, starring Robin Williams, Mila Kunis, Peter Dinklage & Melissa Leo (2014) – Director, and The Good Fight, CBS All Access (2017) – Co-creator.

Field of Dreams was nominated for the Directors Guild Award, the Writers Guild Award, National Board of Review Best Picture, and three Academy Awards®, including Best Screenplay Adaptation. It won the Christopher Award, and Premiere Magazine’s Readers Poll for Best Picture of 1989. In 2017 it was selected by the Library of Congress for the National Film Registry. Freedom Song won the Writers Guild Award for Best Original Longform, was nominated for two Emmy® Awards, three NAACP Image Awards (including Best TV Movie), a Screen Actors Guild Award, and the Humanitas Prize. It received the Christopher Award, the San Francisco Film Society’s Golden Gate Award, and a National Association of Minorities in Communications Image Award. For Band of Brothers, he (together with all the series’ directors) was nominated for a Directors Guild Award, and won the Emmy® Award for Best Directing of a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special, and the 2002 Christopher Award for Television and Cable. In 1990, he was named “Screenwriter of the Year” by the National Association of Theatre Owners, and in 1994 received the Writers Guild’s Valentine Davies Award for contributions to the entertainment industry and the community-at-large.

As the most prolific producer of film music in the world, Robert Townson has been averaging one new album release a week for the last thirty years. His work focuses not only on the most successful blockbusters of today but has, from the very beginning, made a priority of restoring and releasing the priceless musical treasures of Hollywood’s glorious history. In July of 2010, Townson celebrated the release of his 1,000th album, and currently has over 1,400 to his credit.

Townson founded his first record label, Masters Film Music, in Canada in October of 1985. His first album release was Jerry Goldsmith’s The Final Conflict, and the string of successes has continued, uninterrupted, ever since. Townson and Goldsmith would end up doing over 80 albums together. His complete discography of original soundtracks, restorations of classics and new recording is impossible to even summarize briefly. It  overflows with blockbuster and Academy Award®-winning films, iconic and Emmy®-winning television productions, as well as Grammy®-nominated and -winning recordings.

Townson began producing a series of film music concerts during his days recording with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. He collaborates with of all of the world’s major film music festivals, including the Fimucité Festival on Tenerife in the Canary Islands, the World Soundtrack Awards in Ghent, Belgium, Film Music Festival in Krakow, Poland, and Hollywood In Vienna. In August of 2011, Townson produced the official Abbey Road Studios 80th Anniversary Concert in London, while his summer 2012 schedule included the official Universal Pictures 100th Anniversary Concert, with the Tenerife Symphony for Fimucité.

2013 saw Townson produce and host China’s very first film music concert on the stage of the Venetian Resort Hotel featuring the Macau Orchestra and Choir and flute soloist Sara Andon. Most recently Robert produced and hosted two concerts with the RSNO in November 2018 celebrating the Varèse Sarabande 40th Anniversary in both Edinburgh and Glasgow. Townson continues his soundtrack and concert production activities to bring great film music, live and recorded, to audiences all over the world.

Mark McKenzie earned his masters and doctorate degrees in Composition at the University of Southern California studying with Pierre Boulez, Witold Lutoslawski, and Morton Lauridsen. He taught theory, counterpoint, and orchestration at USC for six years before turning his attention to film. With an invitation to orchestrate from Oscar® nominated composer Bruce Broughton, Mark began orchestrating a body of work that grew to over 100 feature films. Variety writes: “Mark McKenzie has been the ‘go to’ guy behind-the scenes for top film composers like Bruce Broughton John Barry, Danny Elfman, Mark Isham, Paul McCartney, John Powell, Marc Shaiman, Alan Silvestri, John Williams and others.” A particular honor was to orchestrate Jerry Goldsmith’s final 6 films. McKenzie’s orchestration work can be heard on 91 soundtracks such as the Academy Award® winning multi platinum Dances With Wolves, the Academy Award® nominated Men in Black, and Good Will Hunting, blockbusters such as Spiderman 1 and 2, Mission Impossible, Sleepless in Seattle, Sister Act, Star Trek 6, 7 and 10, Ice Age: The Meltdown, A Few Good Men, and the Elfman/Burton classic The Nightmare Before Christmas.

The Hollywood Reporter writes: “Mark McKenzie’s commanding orchestral prowess puts him among the foremost symphonists in Hollywood.” His original compositions have been featured repeatedly on the Oscars® and in 36 films such as Francis Ford Coppola’s My Family/Mi Familia, with Jimmy Smits, Edward James Olmos and Esai Morales, the family classic The Ultimate Gift, with James Garner and Abigail Breslin, Blizzard, with Whoopi Goldberg and Christopher Plumber, The Disappearance of Garcia Lorca, with Andy Garcia, Edward James Olmos and Esai Morales, Silver Bells, with Anne Heche, In From the Night, with Marcia Gay Harden, and the western Frank and Jesse, with Bill Paxton, Rob Lowe and Randy Travis. Mark’s score to The Greatest Miracle was doubly nominated by the International Film Music Critics Association for “Best Score of the Year,” and was the winner of the HMMA “Best Indie Score of the Year” award. His recent score to Max and Me, with concert violinist Joshua Bell, has been called “staggeringly beautiful, a ravishing masterwork,” and repeatedly “Score of the Year.” Twenty one of his original soundtracks are available commercially. Mark has been an SCL Board member since 2017.