John Harold Kander (born March 18, 1927) is the American composer of a number of musicals as part of the songwriting team of Kander and Ebb. He wrote the music for the stage musical Cabaret, for which he won the Tony Award as Composer and Lyricist. He and Ebb received the Kennedy Center Honors award for Lifetime Achievement in 1998.
Life and career [ edit ]
Kander was born in
Kansas City, Missouri, and attended [1 ] the Pembroke Country-Day School and Oberlin College before earning a master's degree at Columbia University where he was a protégé of Douglas Moore and studied composition with Jack Beeson and Otto Luening. His studies were interrupted at Oberlin when he served in the Cadet corps of the [2 ] United States Merchant Marines.
Kander began his Broadway career as substitute rehearsal pianist for
. The stage manager for West Side Story West Side Story then asked Kander to play the auditions for her next show, . During the auditions, Kander met the choreographer, Gypsy Jerome Robbins, who suggested that Kander compose the dance music for the show in 1959. After that experience, he wrote dance arrangements for in 1960. Irma la Douce
His first produced musical was
, written with A Family Affair James and William Goldman. He met lyricist Fred Ebb in 1962 and began a songwriting collaboration that would last for more than four decades. Later that year rising star Barbra Streisand recorded two of the duo's songs, "My Coloring Book" and "I Don't Care Much." In 1965, Kander and Ebb landed their first show on Broadway, , produced by Flora the Red Menace Hal Prince, directed by George Abbott, and with book by George Abbott and Robert Russell, in which Liza Minnelli made her initial Broadway appearance. Kander and Ebb have since been associated with writing material for both Liza Minnelli and Chita Rivera, and have produced special material for their appearances live and on television.
and Cabaret have been made into films; the film version of Chicago Chicago won the 2002 Academy Award for Best Picture.
Kander, along with Ebb, also wrote songs for
Thornton Wilder's , and it was set to premiere in London, but the rights were pulled by Wilder's nephew. He also says that The Skin of Our Teeth Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones, the writers of The Fantasticks, wrote a musical of Wilder's and it took them thirteen years to write, only to have the rights pulled as well by the nephew. Our Town [3 ]
His first musical without
Fred Ebb in many years, The Landing, with book and lyrics by Greg Pierce, premiered at the Vineyard Theatre, kicking off their 2013–2014 season [4 ]
Kander's newest musical,
Kid Victory, also with Greg Pierce, had its world premiere February 28, 2015 at the Signature Theatre in Arlington, VA. [5 ]
Personal life [ edit ]
In 2010, Kander married dancer and choreographer Albert Stephenson, his partner since 1977, in Toronto.
[6 ] Kander's nephew, [7 ] Jason Kander, is Missouri Secretary of State. [8 ]
John Kander work [ edit ]
Lyrics by Fred Ebb unless otherwise noted
The duo also contributed songs for the following movies:
, Composer and Lyricist, 1967, for Tony Award Cabaret
, Original Score, 1981, for Tony Award Woman Of The Year
, Original Score, 1993, for Tony Award Kiss Of The Spiderwoman
, Outstanding Lyrics, 2010, for Drama Desk Award The Scottsboro Boys
, 1973, for Emmy Award Liza With A Z
, 1993, for Emmy Award Liza Minnelli Live! From Radio City Music Hall
The team also received numerous nominations, which include five additional Tony Awards, two
Academy Awards, and four Golden Globe Awards.
Kander, like Ebb, is also a member of the
American Theater Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 1991. [9 ]
In 1998, Kander and Ebb received the
Kennedy Center Honors award for Lifetime Achievement. [10 ]
References [ edit ]
External links [ edit ]