Classical KUSC Press Releases

KUSC Press Releases




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE            December 13, 2010
Contact:  Gail Eichenthal
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LOS ANGELES – As part of its signature holiday programming, Classical KUSC (91.5 FM in Los Angeles) presents a two-hour special marking the 50th anniversary of Elmer Bernstein's most famous movie score: The Magnificent SevenCast a Giant Shadow: The Music of Elmer Bernstein airs Sunday, December  26 at 2pm.  The special is part of the station’s extraordinary variety of programs for the holiday season.

Cast a Giant Shadow is written and hosted by film-music historian, author, and USC faculty member Jon Burlingame, who has become a greatly popular guest host on the station over the past five years. The program will feature excerpts from many of Bernstein's film scores and concert works, as well as interviews conducted with the late composer himself, discussing his approach to the craft of film music and the specifics of many of his scores. Rarely heard, out-of-print recordings will also be featured.

“We are delighted to enrich the season for our listeners with Jon’s exquisitely researched presentation on Elmer Bernstein, who composed some of the most familiar and dramatically effective scores in American movie history,” said KUSC President Brenda Barnes.

“It’s a joy to present another great film music special hosted by Jon Burlingame,” said KUSC Program Director Gail Eichenthal, who serves as executive producer of the broadcast. “This program was literally generated by popular demand; Jon gets copious amounts of fan mail following every one of his previous film music specials. Not surprising, since he is not only a great broadcaster, but easily one of the most erudite film music historians in the world.”

 In addition to the classic Western music of The Magnificent Seven (1960), Elmer Bernstein wrote the Groundbreaking jazz score for The Man With the Golden Arm (1955), the epic orchestral The Ten Commandments (1956), the poignant To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), the jaunty war march of The Great Escape (1963) and another Western classic in True Grit (1969). Later in his career, he scored more lighthearted music for zany comedies including National Lampoon's Animal House (1978) and Ghostbusters (1984).

Bernstein worked in movies for more than half a century beginning in 1950, and continuing to compose until his death in 2004. During his last 15 years in films he was a frequent collaborator with director Martin Scorsese (The Age of Innocence) and such younger directors as Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven).

Nominated 14 times for the Academy Award, he won for 1967's Thoroughly Modern Millie. He also won an Emmy (for The Making of a President 1960) and was nominated for two Tonys (for How Now Dow Jones and Merlin). His famous television themes include the familiar National Geographic fanfare as well as General Electric Theater, Riverboat and Ellery Queen. The program will feature excerpts from all of these lesser known, and largely out-of-print, scores.

For additional KUSC holiday programming, please visit
Classical KUSC is one of the largest and most listened to non-profit classical music stations in the country. It is also the most listened to public radio station in Southern California. KUSC is dedicated to preserving classical music as a living art. Located in downtown Los Angeles, Classical KUSC uses digital transmission technology to broadcast commercial-free uninterrupted classical performances. The non-profit, listener-supported station has been broadcasting for over 60 years. The station is a broadcast service of the University of Southern California at 91.5(FM) in Los Angeles; 88.5 KPSC in Palm Springs; 91.l KDSC in Thousand Oaks, 88.7 KQSC in Santa Barbara, and 99.7 KESC in Morro Bay/San Luis Obispo. For more information, please visit
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