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Maurice Jarre

Maurice Jarre

Maurice Jarre is a French composer of film scores, noted for his use of the Ondes Martenot. and for the scores of many films including a series of David Lean films, Lawrence Of Arabia, Doctor Zhivago (1965), Ryan's Daughter (1970) and A Passage to India (1984). These are often considered his best work and some of the most enduring movie music in the repertory.

He has been nominated for nine Academy Awards, and has won three:

  • Nominated for Best Music, Original Score for: Ghost
  • Nominated for Best Music, Original Score for: Gorillas in the Mist
  • Nominated for Best Music, Original Score for: Witness
  • Won Oscar for Best Music, Original Score for: A Passage to India
  • Nominated for Best Music, Original Score for: The Message
  • Nominated for Best Music, Song for: The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean for the song Marmalade, Molasses & Honey
  • Won for Best Music, Score - Substantially Original for: Doctor Zhivago
  • Nominated for Best Music, Scoring of Music, Adaptation or Treatment for: Les Dimanches de ville d'Avray
  • Won for Best Music, Score - Substantially Original for: Lawrence of Arabia
Jarre wrote for orchestras, but largely switched to synthesized music in the 1980s, largely for practical rather than esthetic motivations, many critics feel. The thunderous percussive opening and broad heroic theme of Lawrence of Arabia and the striking cimbalom Lara's Theme from Doctor Zhivago are more famous than the heartbreaking closing motif from Ghost (1990), the woodwind theme from Fatal Attraction, and the modal Irish tonality he wrote for David Lean's Ryan's Daughter as well as his Mad Max score for Beyond Thunderdome (1985).

Now officially retired, Jarre's scored his last film in 2001, a TV movie about the Holocaust entitled Uprising.

Maurice is the father of Jean Michel Jarre. His youngest son Kevin is a screenwriter, with credits on such movies as Tombstone and Glory.


Note: This profile was written in or before 2004.

Maurice Jarre Facts

Birth NameMaurice-Alexis Jarre
OccupationDirector, Composer
BirthdaySeptember 13, 1924 (93)
SignVirgo
BirthplaceLyon, France

Selected Filmography

Mr. Jones
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