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Henry Mancini

Henry Mancini

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Also Known As: Hank Mancini, Enrico Nicola Mancini Died: June 14, 1994
Born: April 16, 1924 Cause of Death: complications from liver and pancreatic cancer
Birth Place: Cleveland, Ohio, USA Profession: music arranger, pianist, composer, songwriter, orchestra leader, music producer, TV host, piccolo player

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Multiple Oscar and Grammy award-winning composer whose numerous plush, tuneful, often jazzy scores of the 1950s, 60s, 70s and 80s were often more memorable than the films and TV shows for which they were written. Mancini began his career as a pianist-arranger for the Glenn Miller Orchestra under the direction of Tex Beneke after WWII and from 1952 to 1958 worked on more than 100 films as staff composer for Universal Pictures. In 1958 Mancini reached a career-changing landmark when he provided the hard-boiled, jazzy theme for Blake Edwards' "Peter Gunn" TV show. His feature film work, which had began attracting attention with his compositions and adaptation for "The Glenn Miller Story" (1954), also showed increasing maturity that same year with his Latin-accented, percussive score for Orson Welles' classic "Touch of Evil". Mancini won his first two Oscars for the glittery romantic score of Edwards' "Breakfast at Tiffany's" (1961) and his most famous and oft-quoted composition, the film's theme song, "Moon River". The following year he composed the award-winning and almost-as-famous "Days of Wine and Roses" for the Edwards film of the same name. Mancini would work with Edwards on a total of 27 films,...

Multiple Oscar and Grammy award-winning composer whose numerous plush, tuneful, often jazzy scores of the 1950s, 60s, 70s and 80s were often more memorable than the films and TV shows for which they were written. Mancini began his career as a pianist-arranger for the Glenn Miller Orchestra under the direction of Tex Beneke after WWII and from 1952 to 1958 worked on more than 100 films as staff composer for Universal Pictures. In 1958 Mancini reached a career-changing landmark when he provided the hard-boiled, jazzy theme for Blake Edwards' "Peter Gunn" TV show. His feature film work, which had began attracting attention with his compositions and adaptation for "The Glenn Miller Story" (1954), also showed increasing maturity that same year with his Latin-accented, percussive score for Orson Welles' classic "Touch of Evil".

Mancini won his first two Oscars for the glittery romantic score of Edwards' "Breakfast at Tiffany's" (1961) and his most famous and oft-quoted composition, the film's theme song, "Moon River". The following year he composed the award-winning and almost-as-famous "Days of Wine and Roses" for the Edwards film of the same name. Mancini would work with Edwards on a total of 27 films, ranging from "The Pink Panther" (1964), whose sly, insinuating theme was another Mancini landmark, through "Victor/Victoria" (1982), which snared the composer yet another Oscar, right up to "Son of the Pink Panther" (1993). Mancini also composed for a wide variety of TV series, including the theme music for "Newhart" and "Remington Steele", miniseries including "The Thorn Birds" (1983) and specials even including the televising of the 1991 Democratic party's presidential candidates debate. His influence in moving scoring from an orchestral and symphonic sound to smaller group arrangements and an alluring blend of jazz and easy listening music was enormously influential and his easy facility across a wide range of popular genres enabled him to remain one of the leading artists in his field right up until the time of his death from cancer at 70.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Ice Princess (2005)
3.
 Heavy Petting (1988)
4.
 Frank Sinatra: The Voice (1998) Interviewee
7.
 1992 Grammy Awards (1992) Presenter
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Obtained first instrument, a piccolo, at age eight; later learned the flute and piano
1946:
Joined Glenn Miller Band (under direction of Tex Beneke) as pianist and arranger
:
Went to work for Universal-International as staff composer where he wrote scores for over 100 films including "The Glenn Miller Story" (1954) for which he received his first Oscar nomination
1952:
First film work, as uncredited arranger on the Abbott and Costello comedy, "Lost in Alaska"
1954:
First film credit for title song, "Six Bridges to Cross" and for music adaptation and song, "The Glenn Miller Story"
1954:
Received first Oscar nomination, for "Best Scoring of a Musical Picture", for "The Glenn Miller Story"
1958:
Created now-classic theme for TV detective series, "Peter Gunn"; also first notable TV composition and first collaboration with writer-director Blake Edwards
1959:
Became an RCA recording artist
:
Composed his first score for a TV series, the CBS adventure, "Mr. Lucky"
1960:
Association with Universal ended with his work on the film, "The Great Imposter"
1960:
First of 27 feature collaborations with writer-producer-director Blake Edwards, "High Time"
1971:
Hosted and served as music director for three syndicated TV specials highlighting his compositions, "Monsanto Presents Mancini"
:
Composed music for the CBS TV series, "Cade's County"
:
Composed music for the NBC mystery series, "Columbo", in the 1970s
:
Hosted and served as music director of the syndicated variety series, "The Mancini Generation"
:
Provided music for the NBC sci-fi adventure series, "The Invisible Man"
:
Provided music for the ABC sitcom, "What's Happening"
1976:
Composed music for first TV miniseries, "Arthur Hailey's 'The Moneychangers'"
1977:
Composed music for the NBC TV series, "Kingston: Confidential"
1983:
Last original theme music composition for a TV series, the ABC anthology drama, "Hotel"
1986:
Received last of 18 Oscar nominations, in the category of "Best Song", for the title tune of Blake Edwards's comedy, "That's Life"
1987:
Career feted on the PBS variety show, "Mancini and Friends"
:
Last TV collaborations with Blake Edwards, the TV-movies "Justin Case" and "Peter Gunn"
1991:
Last TV theme music composition, "Democrats: A Presidential Debate"
1992:
Composed music for the syndicated revival of the game show, "Tic Tac Dough"
1993:
Last feature film credit as well as last feature collaboration with Blake Edwards, "Son of the Pink Panther"
1993:
Last major TV appearance, on the Disney Channel's variety concert special, "Disney's Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra"
1994:
Began undergoing treatments for blood clots and cancer
1994:
Made one of last public appearances on April 19 at gala celebrating his 70th birthday at the Pauley Pavilion at UCLA
1995:
Made Broadway debut as composer (posthumously) with Blake Edwards' stage version of "Victor/Victoria"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Carnegie Institute of Technology: Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania -
Aliquippa High School: Aliquippa , Pennsylvania - 1942
The Juilliard School: New York , New York - 1942

Notes

Named a honorary alumni at UCLA (1974)

He received an honorary doctrate of music from Duquesne University in 1977.

Made honorary major of Northridge CA

Endowed yearly for the film music scholarship at UCLA.

Endowed yearly for the composition scholarship at Juilliard School of Music in New York.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Virginia Mancini. Singer. Married September 13, 1947; formerly a member of the singing group the Mellolarks.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Quinto Mancini. Steelworker. Played the flute in the Aliquippa (PA) Sons of Italy band.
mother:
Anna Mancini.
son:
Christopher Mancini.
daughter:
Monica O'Connor. Singer, actor. Twin of Felice.
daughter:
Felice O'Connor. Twin of Monica.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Sounds and Scores"

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