Elmer Bernstein’s “The Great Escape” To Be Performed Live At Royal Festival Hall

Elmer Bernstein’s score for The Great Escape will be performed live in full for the first time to a screening of the classic 1963 film on Saturday September 21 2019, 7pm, at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall.

Film composing legend Elmer Bernstein’s unforgettable score to one of the best-loved war films is played live in full for the very first time at a one-off performance at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall on Saturday September 21.

The Great Escape tells the – mostly – true story of a group of Second World War POWs intent on breaking out of a top-security camp by any means possible. Featuring a stellar cast led by Steve McQueen, John Sturges’ classic 1963 film’s ‘whistling’ theme tune is one of the most instantly-recognisable in all movies. The composer’s son, Peter Bernstein, conducts the BBC Concert Orchestra in this masterclass in film composition, synchronised with the film screened in high definition. The screening marks 75 years since the real ‘great escape’ from Stalag Luft III in 1944.

American composer Elmer Bernstein wrote the music to over 200 films and TV shows, including The Ten Commandments (1956), Sweet Smell of Success (1957), The Magnificent Seven (1960), To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), The Great Escape (1963), True Grit (1969), National Lampoon’s Animal House (1978), Airplane! (1980), Ghostbusters (1984), My Left Foot (1989), The Grifters (1990), The Age of Innocence (1993), and Far From Heaven (2002).

Further film and music highlights at Southbank Centre this September:

  • Czech National Symphony Orchestra performs the dramatic score live as Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is shown in high definition on a 40-foot screen (17 & 18 Sep, RFH)
  • Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Orchestra pays tribute to the late composer and arranger Michel Legrand in Michel Legrand Remembered: Keep the Music Playing (20 Sep, RFH)
  • London Concert Orchestra performs Licence to Thrill: The Music of James Bond (28 Sep, RFH)

Tickets are on sale to the general public at www.southbankcentre.co.uk / 0203 879 9555  – £20 – £45 (concessions 25% off)

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