The works of the American composer John Williams have been repeatedly performed by famous musicians Yitzhak Perelman, Mstislav Rostropovich, Leonard Slatkin, Yo Yo Ma. The author is known for his tracks to TV series and movies, including the cult Star Wars, Indiana Jones. He composed the music for the Superman and Harry Potter series. "Home Alone" and "Alien" became the visiting card of the composer.
One of the most recognizable and titled musicians in America, John Towner Williams has long been considered a classic in his homeland. He has a solid collection of the most prestigious awards, including BAFTA, Saturn, Grammy, and Golden Globe.
The beginning of the path to the heights
The biography of the musician who has repeatedly conducted well-known international and national orchestras began in 1932 in the family of Johnny Williams, drummer of the Raymond Scott Quintet. The boy was born on February 8 in New York's Long Island. Music captivated the child almost from the moment of birth. At 15, he was sure that he would be engaged in musical creativity, For himself, he decided to choose a career as a pianist.
Together with his parents, John moved to Los Angeles in 1948. The talented teenager received his education at the North Hollywood High School. He attended classes at UCLA and City College. In addition, the promising young musician studied with the composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco.
And in 1951 the nineteen-year-old composer presented his first work, a piano sonata. In 1952 Williams was drafted into the army. In the Air Force, before completing his service, for 3 years, he was engaged in arranging and conducting the orchestra.
Returning to civilian life, John became a student at the Juilliard School of Music. He began to study in the piano class again. The performer's talent was fully confirmed by the flattering characteristics of his teacher, Rosina Levina. Williams also performed at jazz clubs in Gurney Mancini and collaborated with the popular artist Frankie Lane, helping to work on a series of his albums. The teachers who appreciated his creative potential, unanimously recommended the young man to focus exclusively on creating music.
The future maestro left for Los Angeles to gain recognition in Hollywood. Work began as a pianist at the Dream Factory studios. In 1956 the composer was invited to work on the series Theater 90. John created episode tracks throughout the project. The new work is The Well Fargo Stories.
In 1958, the tracks for Peter Gunn, South Pacific were written. Then there was participation in the recording of music for "Only girls in jazz or some like it hot" and "Apartment", "To Kill a Mockingbird".
At 24, Williams became a staff arranger at Columbia Studios. Then he was invited to the same position at 20th Century-Fox. Under the direction of Williams, the orchestras performed works by authors of the Hollywood Golden Age. John not only worked on the creation of arrangements, but also personally accompanied celebrities, including Doris Day and Vic Damon.
He happily arranged a personal life. The actress Barbara Rewick became his chosen one. In alliance with her, three children appeared. The first child in 1956 was daughter Jennifer, who later chose a career as a doctor. Sons Mark and Joseph are rock musicians.
The TV moguls and producer were attracted by Williams' collaboration with large orchestras. He received many orders for television. The music for the serial project "Checkmate" and "Lost in Space" was created. The Emmy Awards brought tracks to Jane Eyre, Because They're Young and Heidi. Very soon John became one of the best music composers for comedy films.
The composer received an offer to write an accompaniment to the film How to Steal a Million. The result brought even more recognition. The American Film Academy awarded the author an Oscar for the film Fiddler on the Roof. By the early seventies, Williams was considered the king of disaster music. He penned tracks in "Earthquake", "Adventures on Poseidon".
The most original are the arrangements in "Images". Steven Spielberg was inspired by the traditional compositions of John, who was invited by the director to compose the music for the Sugarland Express. The collaboration was continued by "Jaws". For the film, the author proposed a super-shock ostinato: two notes frightened the audience more than a giant shark.
The name of the twice Oscar-winning composer has become a symbol of quality cinema. Impressed by the author's professionalism, Spielberg recommended him to George Lucas. In 1977, the Star Wars music was released as an album. The disc reignited interest in epics, becoming the best-selling compilation featuring themes from the film.
Over the next five years, music was written for "Rage", "Superman", "Indiana Jones: In Search of the Lost Ark", which turned into cult works of Hollywood. In 1980, the composer took over as conductor of the Boston Pop Orchestra. It was directed by Williams until 1993. To this day, the author remains its honored conductor.
After the death of his wife, the chosen one John became interior designer Samantha Winslow. In 1980 they became husband and wife. The third "Oscar" brought music to "Alien". Thanks to the author's talent, the paintings "Empire of the Sun", "River", "Born on the Fourth of July" are among the brightest events of the eighties. He took part in the work on the TV almanac "Magic Stories", created music for the NBC channel. The "Twilight Zone" and "The Color of Purple" appeared in collaboration with Spielberg.
Since the nineties, the composer decided to work only with selected paintings. He was going to stop working in the cinema. But he agreed to write music for "Schindler's List", worked on "Jurassic Park". Sparkling variations were written for the animated series The Simpsons. Tracks to the films "Saving Private Ryan" and "Seven Years in Tibet" turned into a new recognition.
The composer's trademark was bravura themes for the most ambitious film projects of the time in the genres of fantasy and science fiction, as well as the repetition of the leading motif. Williams is not going to completely stop working. He collaborated with Lucas and Spielberg on the tracks for Minority Report and Catch Me If You Can. The composer agreed to write music for a new film about the adventures of Indiana Jones.
Williams is working on concert programs and music for operettas. The composer is the holder of several honorary doctorates and a huge number of thanks. His most notable works in recent years include tracks from the Harry Potter film series, combined into a suite to tell kids about the orchestra structure. His jazz prelude and fugue, composition for string orchestra, song written for the Paralympic Games and multimedia presentation of the TV movie "Unfinished Journey" are especially respected.