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Alex North
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Composer
    (December 4, 1910-September 8, 1991)
    Born in Chester, Pennsylvania
    Birth name was Isadore Soifer
    Composed scores for the films ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ (1951), ‘Death of a Salesman’ (1951), ‘Viva Zapata!’ (1952), ‘The Rose Tattoo’ (1955), ‘The Rainmaker’ (1956), ‘Spartacus’ (1960), ‘Cleopatra’ (1963), ‘The Agony and the Ecstasy’ (1965), ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’ (1966), ‘The Shoes of the Fisherman’ (1968), ‘Shanks’ (1974), ‘Bite the Bullet’ (1975), ‘Dragonslayer’ (1981), ‘Under the Volcano’ (1984), ‘Prizzi’s Honor’ (1985), and ‘Good Morning, Vietnam’ (1987)
    Wrote the music for the song ‘Unchained Melody’ (1955)
    He said, ‘I resisted moving to L.A. permanently and still regret having moved here..’
    He composed a score for ‘2001: A Space Odyssey,’ but Stanley Kubrick discarded it in favor of the classical music pieces he had been using as guide tracks.
    He did not know his score had been rejected until he saw ‘2001’ at its premier screening.
    He was nominated for Academy Awards fifteen times without winning.
    He won scholarships to Juilliard (1929) and the Moscow Conservatory (1933).
    He composed ballet scores for Martha Graham.
    He won an Emmy for composing the score for the miniseries ‘Rich Man, Poor Man.’ (1976)
    Composers Jerry Goldsmith and John Williams considered him a mentor.
    He was the first composer to receive an honorary Oscar (1987).
    His score for ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ was added to the National Recording Registry by the Library of Congress (2016).

Credit: C. Fishel


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