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Oscar-Winning Composer James Horner, 1953-2015

Music and filmmaking communities are mourning the death of Academy Award-winning composer, conductor, and orchestrator James Horner. Reports indicate that Horner was piloting a small aircraft that crashed near Santa Barbara on Monday, June 22, and he did not survive.

Horner, aged 61, had a long, acclaimed career dating back to his first major film project, The Lady in Red in 1979. Over the years, he often integrated Celtic instrumentation into his compositions, a hallmark that is notable in his Oscar-winning music for James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster Titanic (Best Original Dramatic Score and Best Original Song for Celine Dion’s hit “My Heart Will Go On”).

The son of Oscar-winning art director/set designer Harry Horner, James Horner also composed music for two Star Trek films, The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), A Beautiful Mind (2001), Apollo 13 (1995), Braveheart (1995), Field of Dreams (1989), Aliens (1986), and many more beloved films.

Mix magazine covered sound for the films Avatar and Troy, both of which featured music by James Horner.

Fans of Horner’s work will enjoy this raw footage of the composer conducting his own orchestral score for Avatar.