Marilyn Bergman, Oscar-winning lyricist, dies aged 93 | Music

Marilyn Bergman, the Oscar-winning lyricist who teamed with husband Alan Bergman on The Method We Had been, How Do You Maintain the Music Taking part in? and lots of of different songs, died at her Los Angeles residence Saturday. She was 93.

She died of respiratory failure not associated to Covid-19, in line with a consultant, Jason Lee. Her husband was at her bedside when she died.

The Bergmans, who married in 1958, had been among the many most enduring, profitable and productive songwriting partnerships, specialising in introspective ballades for movie, tv and the stage that mixed the romance of Tin Pan Alley with the polish of latest pop.

They labored with a number of the world’s prime melodists, together with Marvin Hamlisch, Cy Coleman and Michel Legrand, and had been lined by a number of the world’s biggest singers, from Frank Sinatra and Barbra Streisand to Aretha Franklin and Michael Jackson.


“If one actually is severe about wanting to jot down songs which might be unique, that basically converse to folks, it’s a must to really feel such as you created one thing that wasn’t there earlier than – which is the final word accomplishment, isn’t it?” Marilyn Bergman informed HuffPost in 2013. “And to make one thing that wasn’t there earlier than, it’s a must to know what got here earlier than you.”

Marilyn Bergman and her husband, Alan, arriving on the Artistic Arts Emmy Awards in 2018. {Photograph}: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

Their songs included the Streisand-Neil Diamond duet You Don’t Convey Me Flowers, Sinatra’s Good ’n’ Straightforward and Dean Martin’s Sleep Heat. They helped write the uptempo themes to the Seventies sitcoms Maude and Good Occasions and collaborated on phrases and music for the 1978 Broadway present Ballroom.

However they had been greatest identified for his or her contributions to movies, turning out themes generally remembered greater than the films themselves. Among the many highlights: Stephen Bishop’s It May Be You, from Tootsie; Noel Harrison’s The Windmills of Your Thoughts, from The Thomas Crown Affair; and, for Finest Buddies, the James Ingram-Patti Austin duet How Do You Maintain the Music Taking part in?


Their peak was The Method We Had been, from the Streisand-Robert Redford romantic drama of the identical title.

Set to Hamlisch’s moody, pensive melody with Streisand’s voice, it was the top-selling music of 1974 and an on the spot customary, proof that nicely into the rock period, the general public nonetheless embraced an old school ballad.

Followers would have struggled to establish an image of the Bergmans, and even recognise their names, however they’d no bother summoning the phrases to The Method We Had been: “Recollections, could also be lovely and but / What’s too painful to recollect / We merely select to neglect / So it’s the laughter / We’ll keep in mind / Each time we keep in mind / The way in which we had been.”

The Bergmans gained three Oscars – for The Method We Had been, Windmills of Your Thoughts and the soundtrack to Streisand’s Yentl – and obtained 16 nominations, three of them in 1983 alone. Additionally they gained two Grammys and 4 Emmys and had been inducted into the Songwriters Corridor of Fame.


Fellow composer Quincy Jones referred to as information of her loss of life crushing. “You, alongside together with your beloved Alan, had been the epitome of Nadia Boulanger’s perception that ‘an artist can by no means be roughly than they’re as a human being,’” he tweeted.

“To these of us who cherished the Bergmans’ lyrics, Marilyn takes a bit our hearts and souls along with her at the moment,” tweeted Norman Lear, creator of Maude and Good Occasions.

Marilyn Bergman grew to become the primary girl elected to the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers and later served because the chair and president. She was additionally the primary chair of the Nationwide Recorded Sound Preservation Board of the Library of Congress.

Streisand labored with them all through her profession, recording greater than 60 of their songs and dedicating a whole album, What Issues Most, to their materials. The Bergmans met her when she was 18, a nightclub singer, and shortly grew to become shut pals.

“I simply love their phrases, I like the sentiment, I like their exploration of affection and relationships,” Streisand informed the Related Press in 2011.

Like Streisand, the Bergmans had been Jews from lower-middle-class households in Brooklyn. They had been born in the identical hospital, Alan 4 years sooner than Marilyn, whose single title was Katz, they usually had been raised in the identical neighbourhood and had been followers of music and flicks since childhood.

They each moved to Los Angeles in 1950 – Marilyn had studied English and psychology at New York College – however didn’t meet till a number of years later, once they had been working for a similar composer.

The Bergmans gave the impression to be freed from the boundaries and tensions of many songwriting groups. They likened their chemistry to house responsibilities (one washes, one dries) or to baseball (pitching and catching), and had been so in tune with one another that they struggled to recall who wrote a given lyric.

“Our partnership as writers or as husband and spouse?” Marilyn informed HuffPost when requested about their relationship. “I believe the features of each are the identical: Respect, belief, all of that’s essential in a writing partnership or a enterprise partnership or in a wedding.”

Apart from her husband, Bergman is survived by their daughter, Julie Bergman.

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