1924 - 1994
Oscar winning composer Henry Mancini died June 14, 1994. He was 70.
Mancini was born April 16, 1924 in Cleveland, Ohio. The son of Italian immigrants, his musical career began at age eight when he learned to play the piccolo. He eventually attended the Julliard School of Music in New York, but cut that short when he served in the military during World War II.
After the war, he became a pianist and arranger for the Glenn Miller Orchestra. During the early 1950’s, Mancini began arranging music for such movies as The Glenn Miller Story, and Benny Goodman Story.
After he arranged the musical score for the television series Peter Gunn, Mancini’s career took off. Oscar winning scores for Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Days of Wine and Roses followed. Mancini also won an Oscar for the song Moon River that was sung in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Other musical arrangements by Mancini include The Pink Panther, The Great Race; 10 and Victor/Victoria, which garnered Mancini an Oscar for best original score.
During his career, Mancini recorded more than 90 albums, and averaged playing about 50 concert dates a year.
In addition to his Oscars, Mancini won 20 Grammy awards.
He died of liver and pancreatic cancer in Los Angeles, California on June 14, 1994.