André Previn

Andre George Previn KBE (/’prevIn/, born Andreas Ludwig Priwin, April 6, 1929 – February 28, 2019, 2019) was a German American pianist, conductor, composer. Previn was awarded four Academy Awards for film and ten Grammy Awards (one for Lifetime Achievement). Previn was the son of Charlotte (nee Epstein), and Jack Previn (Jakob Priwin), a lawyer and judge as well as a music teacher. Previn is believed to be a “distant relative” of Gustav Mahler. Previn, however, laughed off the suggestion that he was related with Mahler in a preconcert interview at Lincoln Center in May 2012. His birth year is not known. While most publications give his birth year as 1929, Previn stated that he was born in 1930. His Jewish family fled Berlin in 1938 to live in Paris. They moved to Los Angeles about a year later. Charles Previn, his great-uncle was Universal’s music director. Andre was born in Los Angeles, and was naturalized as a citizen of the United States in 1943. Previn performed a musical duet at Richard M. Sherman’s 1946 graduation ceremony from Beverly Hills High School. Previn was the pianist and Sherman, who played the flute. Both composers were awarded 1964 Oscars for their films in different musical categories. Pierre Monteux taught Previn private conducting lessons while he was stationed at San Francisco’s Presidio in 1951 and 1952. This was during his military service. Previn rose to fame by arranging and writing Hollywood film scores. He started his career at MGM in 1946 while still in high school. The studio’s music department noticed him for his involvement with a local radio station. He stated that the film studios were always searching for someone who was skilled, quick, and inexpensive. They hired me to do the piecework, and I did it very well. He became a composer-conductor at age 18, his first credit being for a Lassie entry. [10] He was with MGM for more than a decade, but he resigned in his 30s. In 2008, he told Emma Brockes from The Guardian that he knew if a year passed that he would be working for MGM and that if he did not get paid, ‘MGM was a place where you knew you would get paid. But musically, I was too ambitious to accept it. And I was willing to risk any talent I may have. Previn participated in the music of over 50 films as a composer, conductor, or performer during his film career. Previn was nominated for 11 Oscars and won four. In 1967, Previn took over the role of music director at the Houston Symphony Orchestra from Sir John Barbirolli. He was appointed principal conductor of London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) in 1968. [11] He remained there until 1979. He and the LSO were featured on BBC Television’s Andre Previn’s Music Night. He was the music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra (PSO), and he also hosted a television series called Previn and the Pittsburgh. From 1985 to 1988, he was principal conductor at the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. He was appointed music director of Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1985. Previn’s tenure as music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic was not deemed satisfactory. However, other conductors like Simon Rattle and Kurt Sanderling did better at selling out concerts. Previn had a lot of disagreements with Ernest Fleischmann, the orchestra’s Executive Vice President and General Manager. This included the dispute over Salonen being named Principal Guest Conductor. Previn objected to Salonen’s title, and the Japanese tour, being retracted. However, Previn resigned in April 1989. Salonen was appointed Music Director Designate at the Los Angeles Philharmonic four months later. He officially took the position of Music Director in October 1992. Previn’s discography includes hundreds of recordings in jazz, classical, and contemporary classical music. The following lists are very selective due to the large number of recordings. Frederic Dohl is Andre Previn’s complete discography, including LP/CD code codes. Musikalische Vielseitigkeit und asthetische Erfahrung, Stuttgart 2012, pp. 295-319. Many of the films that feature Previn’s music can still be purchased as videos/DVDs and/or soundtrack records. Some of his soundtracks were reissued over the years, including those by Elmer Gantry and Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Inside Daisy Clover, Dead Ringer, and Inside Daisy Clover. Previn recorded dozens of jazz recordings, both as a leader or sideman, mostly during two periods in his career: 1945-1967, then again 1989-192001, with only a few recordings in between. (while he concentrated his career on recording classical music and later on writing contemporary art music). Previn recorded several crossover recordings with classical singers such as Eileen Farrell and Leontyne price, as well as several Easy Listening records with piano or orchestra in the 1960s (beginning With Like Young). Secret Songs for Young Lovers 1959. With David Rose and His Orchestra. Previn was a fan of Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans [13]. Previn also worked as a trio pianist, usually with bass and drums. After his 1956 performance on Shelly Manne’s Modern Jazz Performances of Songs From My Fair Lady, Previn released several albums of jazz arrangements of songs from broadway musicals, as well as solo piano recordings that focussed on popular composers’ songbooks (Andre Previn plays Songs by Vernon Duke 1958; Andre Previn plays Songs by Harold Arlen 1960; Ballads). Solo Jazz Standards, 1996, Alone: Ballads For Solo Piano, 2007, the final recording of songs by Harold Arlen, Sylvia McNair, and David Finck (Come Rain or Shine). The Harold Arlen songbook (1996) and his TV shows featuring Oscar Peterson (1974), which Marlon Brando called “one the greatest hours I’ve ever seen on television”, and Ella Fitzgerald (1979), respectively. Ted Gioia, a jazz historian and critic, wrote in his book on West Coast jazz that Previn was a “great jazz musician.” […] Previn, despite his deep roots in symphonic musical music, tended to avoid Third Stream classicism in jazz. He aimed more at an earthy and hard-swinging style of piano that was sometimes reminiscent of Horace Silver. Previn was a jazz enthusiast long before he gave up on the art. His music was, at its best, a strong representation of the jazz idiom. Dizzy Gillespie said, “He has the flow,” which is something that a lot of men don’t have or won’t get.” Yeah. I was able to hear him play, and knew it. They have the technique and the harmonic sense, which is something that many guys possess. They have perfect coordination. All that’s required. You need more. Even if it’s just an oooooooo, you need to have the flow. Wikipedia

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