Elmer Bernstein

Composer Elmer Bernstein wrote over 100 major film scores, including the music behind The Ten Commandments and Ghostbusters.


Born April 4, 1922, Elmer Bernstein began composing film scores after a brief career in radio and as a concert pianist. His music, drawing heavily on jazz, can be heard in such films as The Man With the Golden Arm (1955), The Ten Commandments (1956), The Magnificent Seven (1960), Airplane! (1980), Ghostbusters (1984), and My Left Foot (1989).


Musical composer and conductor. Elmer Bernstein was born April 4, 1922 in New York City, New York, USA. After writing music for UN radio shows and a brief career as a concert pianist, he began to compose film scores.

Bernstein's music for The Man With the Golden Arm (1955) brought widespread acclaim, and he went on to write over 100 major film scores in a style that drew heavily on jazz. Later film scores include The Ten Commandments, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven, Ghostbusters, Airplane!, and My Left Foot.

Bernstein died of cancer in Ojai, California, on August 18, 2004.

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