Applebaum, Louis

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Applebaum, Louis

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  • Applebaum, Louis, 1918-2000

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1918-2000

History

Louis Applebaum (1918-2000) was a composer, conductor, and arts administrator. He was born and educated in Toronto, except for one year studying in New York with Roy Harris and Bernard Wagenaar. His career in film began in 1940, composing scores for the National Film Board of Canada, later becoming its Music Director. His over 200 film scores included productions in Canada, Hollywood, England and New York and were awarded many honours such as an Academy Award nomination (The Story of G.I. Joe, 1945), Canadian Film Award, Genie and Gemini. Applebaum was the first Music Director of the Stratford Festival and composed scores for over 70 of its plays. He founded and operated its Music and Film Festivals and conducted operas at Stratford and on tour. His fanfares have introduced every Festival theatre performance since opening night in 1953. Scores for radio, TV series and specials, numbering in the hundreds, have been heard on the CBC, CTV, BBC, CBS, NBC, and United Nations radio. His concert works in all genres have been widely performed throughout the world and include large works for symphony, ballet and the music stage. His commissions for ceremonial occasions include the inauguration of three Governors-General, the opening of Expo 67 in Montreal and visits by the Queen. His last opera, Erewhon, with a libretto by Mavor Moore was premiered by Pacific Opera Victoria in 2000. Applebaum was a consultant to many artistic institutions: the National Arts Centre (1964-1967) where he was instrumental in the creation of the NAC Orchestra, the Canada Council (1957-1999), and the Universities of Ottawa, Windsor and York. He helped found the Canadian League of Composers, the Canadian Music Centre, the Canadian Conference of the Arts, the Canadian Guild of Film Composers and was closely associated with the Banff Centre, the Canadian Music Council and the Laidlaw Foundation as Chair of its Arts Panel. Applebaum was one of the founders of C-Channel (a TV arts channel) and Group Four Productions (a film production company) and for many years taught at York University. In 1971, he became Executive Director of the Ontario Arts Council, resigning in 1979 to become Chairman of the Federal Cultural Policy Review Committee which submitted its Report to the Canadian Government in the Fall of 1982. He was president of CAPAC, the performing rights society in 1988 and subsequently chaired a committee leading to the creation of SOCAN (the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada) and became its first president (1990). He would later serve as President of the SOCAN foundation. In recognition of his contributions to the arts in Canada, Applebaum was bestowed with many honours including Officer and Companion, Order of Canada (1976, 1995), Order of Ontario (1989), Centennial Medal (1967), Honourary LLD, York University (1979), and Arts Toronto Lifetime Achievement Award (1998).

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