Classical Brits to honor U.S. film composer Williams

Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:51pm EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - Five-time Oscar winning film composer John Williams will receive a lifetime achievement honor from the Classical Brit Awards in London in October, organizers said on Tuesday.

Williams won his first Academy Award more than 40 years ago with "Fiddler on the Roof", and went on to earn the famous statuette again with "Jaws", "Star Wars", "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial" and "Schindler's List".

Including those wins, he was nominated for an Oscar nearly 50 times, reflecting his place at the pinnacle of soundtrack composition.

The 80-year-old American is still going strong, composing the music for the upcoming film "Lincoln" which is due to hit U.S. theatres late this year.

"For many, the first introduction to large-scale orchestral music was a cinematic experience," said Dickon Stainer and Barry McCann, co-chairmen of the Classic BRIT Awards committee, in a joint statement.

"From the film scores of William Walton, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Erich Korngold and others to the modern day composer, their sheer emotive power has thrilled audiences for decades.

"John Williams has crafted some of the most memorable film scores for over half a century and we are delighted that he has kindly accepted the Lifetime Achievement award in honor of his fine work."

As well as scoring dozens of films, Williams has produced 130 studio albums, 49 compilation albums and 23 singles, according to the Brits.

With a total of 47 Academy Award nominations, he is the second most short-listed individual after Walt Disney.

The Classical Brits, sponsored by Mastercard, will be held at London's Royal Albert Hall on October 2.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Jill Serjeant; desking by Andrew Hay)

Actress Catherine Deneuve (L) poses with composer John Williams after he won the Golden Globe for Best Original Score in a Motion Picture for "Memoirs of a Geisha" at the 63rd Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California January 16, 2006.