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Harold Arlen (1905–1986)

No American has written more first-rate songs than Arlen. He grew up in a musical family (his father was a cantor), and disappointed but didn't surprise his parents by dropping out of high school to become a musician. A stint as pianist and singer with a dance band, the Buffalodians, allowed him to escape Buffalo for New York City. Arlen stayed on... See full bio »

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »


Known For

The Wizard of Oz Music Department
Blade Runner 2049 Soundtrack
Sphere Soundtrack


Hide Hide Show Show Music department (29 credits)
 2020 Hope@Home (TV Series) (music - 1 episode)
- Episode #1.10 (2020) ... (music)
 2019 If You Only Had a Dog (Music Video)
 2015 Ha-Kosem Me'eretz Utz Hamachzemer (Video) (composer: song "Over the Rainbow")
 1995-2010 Taxicab Confessions (TV Series) (composer - 15 episodes)
- The City That Never Sleeps (2010) ... (composer: theme music)
- New York, New York: Part 2 (2006) ... (composer: theme music)
- New York, New York (2005) ... (composer: theme music)
- Girls Like It Hot (2003) ... (composer: theme music)
- A Fare to Remember (2002) ... (composer: theme music)
 2010 Rod Stewart: That Old Black Magic (Music Video)
 2006 Mozart Werke Ges.m.b.H. (TV Movie) (composer: song "Over the Rainbow")
 1990 The Wizard of Oz (TV Series short) (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz - 13 episodes)
- Hot Air (1990) ... (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz)
- The Day the Music Died (1990) ... (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz)
- Upside-Down Town (1990) ... (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz)
- The Marvelous Milkmaid of Mechanica (1990) ... (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz)
- Time Town (1990) ... (based on music from the Original Motion Picture The Wizard of Oz)
 1985 Frank Sinatra in Japan: Live at the Budokan Hall, Tokyo (TV Special) (music: "Come Rain or Come Shine")
 1977 Song by Song (TV Series) (music - 1 episode)
- By Ira Gershwin (1977) ... (music)
 1974 Paper Moon (TV Series) (composer - 1 episode)
- Settling (1974) ... (composer: theme music)
 1972 The Valachi Papers (composer: song "Stormy Weather")
 1962 Gay Purr-ee (songs: music by)
 1956 Ford Star Jubilee (TV Series) (music - 1 episode)
- The Wizard of Oz (1956) ... (music: songs: archive footage)
 1956 Producers' Showcase (TV Series) (music by - 1 episode)
- Bloomer Girl (1956) ... (music by)
 1954 The Country Girl (songwriter: music)
 1950 My Blue Heaven (song composer)
 1943 Riding High (additional songs by)
 1943/I The Sky's the Limit (music by)
 1941 I Wake Up Screaming (composer: additional music - uncredited)
 1939 At the Circus (music by)
 1939 The Wizard of Oz (songs music by)
 1936 Here Comes Carter (composer: stock music - uncredited)
 1936 China Clipper (composer: stock music - uncredited)
 1936 Strike Me Pink (music by)
 1933 Let's Fall in Love (lyrics and music by)
 1933 Take a Chance (other songs by)
Show Show Composer (7 credits)
Show Show Soundtrack (1,004 credits)
Show Show Thanks (2 credits)
Show Show Self (12 credits)
Show Show Archive footage (8 credits)

Personal Details

Other Works:

Hooray for What! (1937). Musical comedy. Music by Harold Arlen. Music orchestrated by Don Walker. Book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse. Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg. Conceived by E.Y. Harburg. Additional orchestrations by Joseph Glover, Conrad Salinger and Paul Sterrett. Musical Director: Robert Emmett Dolan. Music arranged by ... See more »

Publicity Listings:

2 Biographical Movies | 1 Print Biography | See more »

Official Sites:

Official Site


Anya Taranda  (her death)

Did You Know?

Personal Quote:

In his lyric-writing, Ira [Gershwin] is a plodder - and I don't mean that disrespectfully. I mean it in the best sense. He digs and digs and digs. He edits. He goes over and over his work to change maybe only a line or just a word. ..Ira hates writing ballads. If I want to get him, all I have to say is, 'Ira, we have a film to do and there are six ballads in it'.


Arlen always felt that his songs were better-known than he was and, on one notable occasion, set out to prove it. When riding in a cab in New York, he heard the cabbie whistling a few bars of "Stormy Weather." Hearing this, Arlen offered to bet the cabbie double or nothing on the fare that he couldn't name the person who wrote the song, and gave the driver three guesses. When all the guesses ... See more »

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