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Louis Applebaum

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Louis Applebaum


Louis Applebaum (3 April 1918, Toronto, Canada – 20 April 2000, Toronto) was a Canadian composer, conductor and arts administrator.

Applebaum studied at the University of Toronto and privately with Roy Harris and Bernard Wagenaar. He composed film music for the National Film Board of Canada and in New York and Hollywood. In 1953, Applebaum was appointed music director of the Shakespeare Festival in Stratford (Ontario), composing incidental music for many productions.

He was instrumental in the formation and administration of many national arts institutions—the Canada Council, the Canadian League of Composers, the Canadian Music Centre and the National Arts Centre, to name only a few. He helped focus the direction of culture in Canada, a primary example of his contribution being his chairmanship of the Federal Cultural Policy Review Committee, a country-wide consultation on cultural concerns, which resulted in the Applebaum-Hébert Report.

Applebaum composed hundreds of scores: for film producers in Canada, Hollywood and New York; for the National Film Board; for radio and television (CBC, BBC, CBS, NBC, United Nations Radio and others) for theatre, orchestra, band, and smaller ensembles. His many awards included the Canadian Film Award, the Wilderness and Anik Awards, as well as an Academy Award nomination. He was an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Applebaum was widely known in association with the Stratford Festival since its inception, both as music director and composer. He established the music program there and provided incidental music for festival productions. His career as a composer and his remarkably extensive range of commissions, together with his energetic administrative leadership, established Applebaum as one of the most prolific and accomplished musicians in Canada.

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