Marvin Hamlisch, the classically trained pianist who composed the music for shows including “A Chorus Line” and movies including “The Way We Were,” winning show business’s most sought-after awards by the armloads, has died. He was 68.
Hamlisch died yesterday in Los Angeles after a brief illness, the Associated Press reported, citing a family spokesman, Jason Lee.
The recipient of three Academy Awards, four Grammys, four Emmys, two Golden Globes and one Tony, Hamlisch provided the music for Barbra Streisand’s 1994 concert tour, the Neil Simon show “The Goodbye Girl” and more than 40 movies that also included “Sophie’s Choice,” “Ordinary People,” and Woody Allen’s “Bananas.”
Only Hamlisch and Richard Rodgers, the American composer who died in 1979, won at least one Oscar, Emmy, Grammy, Tony and a Pulitzer Prize. Hamlisch shared in the 1976 Pulitzer Prize for Drama for “A Chorus Line”; Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II shared a piece of the 1950 award for “South Pacific.”
“From the time I could play the piano, I remember trying to write tunes,” Hamlisch wrote in “The Way I Was,” his 1992 memoir, written with Gerald Gardner. “They were in my head, and I would just sit down and start noodling. Next thing I knew, I had written a melody.”
• Marvin Hamlisch: http://www.marvinhamlisch.com