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date: 30 May 2020

Newman, Alfredlocked

  • Christopher Palmer
  • , revised by Fred Steiner

Extract

(b New Haven, CT, March 17, 1900; d Los Angeles, Feb 17, 1970). American composer and conductor. He was a piano prodigy, making his first public appearance at the age of eight. In 1914 he was offered a piano scholarship by Stojowski for a place at the von Ende School of Music, New York. Family poverty, however, compelled him to abandon a concert career while still young; instead, he played in Broadway theatres and on vaudeville circuits. He studied conducting with William Daly and was the youngest conductor ever to appear on Broadway. As well as serving as music director for the 1920 George White Scandals and for the Greenwich Village Follies of 1922 and 1923, he conducted shows by George and Ira Gershwin, Otto Harbach and Rodgers and Hart. In 1930 Newman went to Hollywood where he was soon appointed music director at United Artists. He worked primarily in film musicals but gradually became more interested in original composition, especially after the success of his score for ...

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Dictionary of American Biography (New York, 1928-37, suppls., 1944-)