was born August 14, 1953 in Los Angeles. He studied music at the Royal
College of Music in London, England. In the 70's he and his family
moved back to Los Angeles, where Horner studied at the USC, gaining
a Bachelor's art degree in composition. After earning a Masters
degree and a PHD in music composition and theory at UCLA he
teached music theory at the same university for a couple of years. But
many found Horner's new scores to sound too much like his older ones.
He was also accused for stealing, and borrowing, music from other composers,
making Horner one of the most controversial composers in Hollywood.
The composer's early interest in avant-garde musical techniques helped
define his personal style, which often blends traditional harmonies and
a conventional orchestral palette with the texture of ethnic instruments
and even electronic sounds. Film scoring became an obvious choice for
Horner, though he brings to it the perspective of the classical composer
and conductor. *Films speak to me right away,* he commented. *The atmosphere,
the overall mood dictates the kind of orchestra I will use. Watching a
film the first few times, I make a charcoal sketch; later I put the colours
in.* In recording his own film scores, Horner often creates his own orchestrations
and prefers to conduct the orchestra directly to picture, instead of using
click tracks or other mechanical timing devices.
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