Entertainment Disney's 10 Best Composers and Lyricists Who Touched Our Hearts With Music

11:51  01 december  2022
11:51  01 december  2022 Source:   msn.com

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Music has long been one of the key components of any movie experience. It has the power to enhance the emotional weight of a scene beyond what the actors and effects artists can do on their own. In the case of musicals, catchy songs also serve as their lifeblood that can make or break the experience.

  Disney's 10 Best Composers and Lyricists Who Touched Our Hearts With Music © Provided by Collider

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The Walt Disney Corporation had understood this since the beginning when Walt Disney experimented with animation and music in his Silly Symphony cartoons. Since then, many talented people have worked to create truly iconic pieces of music that have stuck with audiences long after first viewing the films.

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Lin-Manuel Miranda

A relatively new rising star, Lin-Manuel Miranda first appeared on Broadway as the star, songwriter, and lyricist for In the Heights. From there, Miranda would achieve worldwide recognition for Hamilton. Disney quickly noticed his rising potential and hired him to make the music for Moana.

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Miranda's music was universally praised, and the song "How Far I'll Go" won a Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media. He would collaborate with Disney again for Mary Poppins Returns, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Encanto. As of the writing of this article, he is set to write songs for the live-action release of The Little Mermaid.

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Danny Elfman

After serving as musical director in his brother's street theater group, Danny Elfman would take over when his brother pursued a film career and turn them into a band called Oingo Boingo. Among their fans were Tim Burton and Paul Reubens, who invited Elfman to write the score for their film, Pee-wee's Big Adventure. From there, Elfman has written the score for over a hundred films, including many collaborations with Burton.

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Elfman first wrote for Disney in Dick Tracy, which perfectly fit his surreal, dark, and whimsical style. His next project was The Nightmare Before Christmas, where he also wrote his own lyrics and provided the singing voice of Jack Skellington. Later projects include Burton's live-action remake of Alice in Wonderland and Dumbo and a mall contribution to the MCU in Avengers: Age of Ultron.

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Randy Newman

As a child, Randy Newman's parents moved back and forth between Los Angeles and New Orleans. This helped to define his unique style of songwriting, which he began at the age of 17. After a rocky beginning, he saw success in the 1960s and '70s when he began writing songs for television and film.

In 1995, Newman found a new generation of fans when he wrote the music for Toy Story. He would go on to score the rest of the Toy Story franchise, as well as A Bug's Life, Cars, Cars 3, Monsters, Inc.—where he won an Oscar for "If I Didn't Have You"—and Monsters University. Divorced from Pixar, Newman also worked on James and the Giant Peach and The Princess and the Frog.

Hans Zimmer

From a young age, Hans Zimmer knew that traditional methods of musical education wouldn't work for him. After being kicked out of eight schools, Zimmer joined a band and taught himself how to make music. His style combines traditional orchestral music with electronic music, resulting in a blend that transitioned well to film.

Zimmer first worked with Disney in 1993 on Cool Runnings but was quickly signed on for The Lion King. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score for Lion King and contributed to the film's success as the highest-grossing traditional animated feature. Afterward, he worked with Disney on Muppets Treasure Island, the first four Pirates of the Caribbean films, The Lone Ranger, and Lion King's 2019 remake.

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James Newton Howard

Born to a musical family, James Newton Howard picked up piano lessons at four before attending three different music schools in California. He dropped out of the last one because he didn't want to be tied to the piano and eventually landed a gig touring with Elton John in the '70s and '80s. His first film score was a piece co-written with David Paich in David Lynch's Dune.

Howard's first Disney film was the 2000s Dinosaur, for which his score received universal praise as one of the greatest in all Disney films. "The Egg Travels," which plays during the film's opening, was particularly loved and appeared in the trailer for other Disney films, like 2004s Around the World in 80 Days. Howard would return to Disney for Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Treasure Planet, Maleficent, and Raya and the Last Dragon.

Frank Churchill

At the age of fifteen, Frank Churchill was playing the piano in a cinema in California. He briefly went to UCLA for medical study but dropped out to pursue his passion for music. In 1930, he joined Disney, scored many of their Silly Symphony cartoons, and wrote the song "Who's Afraid of The Big Bad Wolf" for The Three Little Pigs.

In 1937, Churchill was chosen to write the score to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and co-wrote most of the songs, including "Whistle While You Work" and "Someday my Prince Will Come." Churchill would contribute to fellow Golden Age films, Dumbo and Bambi, for which he received Oscar nominations and won for Scoring of a Musical Picture for Dumbo. Sadly, Churchill took his own life in 1942 at the age of 40, but his unfinished music appeared in future films up to Peter Pan.

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Oliver Wallace

Born in London, Oliver Wallace moved to the United States in 1904 and worked as a conductor and organist for silent films. His talent as a songwriter was noticed as talking films began to take over in the 30s, which saw Wallace leave for Hollywood. There, he joined Disney and would remain with the company for 27 years.

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Wallace composed over 150 pieces of music for Disney products before his death in 1963. The majority of these featured in Disney's short films, including the titular song in the 1942 Donald Duck propaganda cartoon Der Fuehrer's Face. For theatrical releases, Wallace worked with Frank Churchill and won the Oscar on Dumbo and would write the scores for The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad until Lady and the Tramp.

The Sherman Brothers

With their father's encouragement, Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman became a songwriting duo in the 1950s. By 1961, they were noticed by Walt Disney, who had them write for the made-for-television film, The Horsemaster. From there, they became Disney's go-to musicians until his death in 1966.

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Among their most recognizable productions include Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, and The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. They won two Oscars for Mary Poppins: Best Musial Score and Best Song for "Chim Chim Cher-ee." The Shermans would return to Disney in 2000 to work on The Tigger Movie, and Richard M. Sherman has worked on the 2016 remake of The Jungle Book and Christoper Robbin.

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Howard Ashman

A New York playwright from Maryland, Howard Ashman saw little fame until he met his friend Alan Menken. Together, the two produced the Broadway adaptation of Little Shop of Horrors and the Frank Oz film in 1986. Disney brought Ashman to write "Once Upon a Time in New York City" for Oliver and Company and then got Menken to work with him on The Little Mermaid.

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Ashman was one of the driving forces behind the Disney Renaissance and worked on Beauty and the Beast and his passion project, Aladdin. His lyrics drew from his own life, which helped to add to their emotional impact. Sadly, Ashman died from complications of AIDS in 1991, a few months before Beauty and the Beast was released.

Alan Menken

Born to a piano-playing dentist father and a mother who could act, dance, and write plays, Alan Menken was all but predetermined for a life in theater and music. After graduating, he met Howard Ashman and partnered with him until Ashman's passing. Menken kept working with Disney, composing for Aladdin, Pocahontas, Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Hercules before the Renaissance ended.

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Menken's ability to compose such diverse and unique music helped Disney dominate the Academy Awards, of which he won Best Score and Best Song from The Litte Mermaid to Pocahontas. He returned to Disney for Home on The Range, Enchanted, Tangled, and the live-action adaptations of his Renaissance successes. He is among the few to reach EGOT status for winning an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award for his music.

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