Born in Detroit, Laurence Rosenthal cites Chopin and Korngold as two composers who had made a big impression upon him. He learned to play the piano from his mother and then studied piano and composition formally at the Eastman School of Music and then again with Nadia Boulanger at the Paris Conservatoire. During the years of the Korean War he composed band music for the armed forces, and continued his musical career in the Air Force composing for their Documentary Film Unit. He conducted his scores with the large US Air Force Symphony Orchestra. This gave Rosenthal some great practical experience which led quite naturally after the war into a career composing for stage, television and film. Among his television music is his work (along with Joel McNeely) with George Lucas on "The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles" (winning numerous Emmy awards), and several dramatic mini series such as "Anastasia: The Mystery of Anna" and "Peter the Great".
Rosenthal's film work resulted in two Oscar nominations, for "Becket" (Original Score) and "Man of La Mancha" (Original Song Score or Adaptation). His epic score for "Clash of the Titans" is suitably Wagnerian (or should that be Korngoldian) in scale, with an heroic main theme, and lots of magical episodes for the Ray Harryhausen special effects and action sequences. In addition to his work for film and television, Rosenthal has continued to write for the Concert Hall and his compositions for this outlet are highly regarded.
As the composer approaches his 90th birthday, John Caps toasts his multifaceted career in Laurence Rosenthal - a 90th Birthday Toast.
There are a few Laurence Rosenthal television and film soundtracks available including the following recommendations:
Here are some CD covers signed by Laurence Rosenthal. Our thanks to Petr Kocanda for permission to use his collection of autographed CDs. Click any thumbnail below to see the image full size in a separate window.