Charles Gerhardt

Composers

Biography

Born: February 6, 1927; Detroit, MI   Died: February 3, 1999; California  
Gerhardt was the first conductor to treat film soundtracks in the same manner as fine concert music. He re-recorded the music with a professional orchestra, thereby encouraging awareness of the many composers writing for the medium.

He began to play the piano at the age of five and was already composing and orchestrating his scores at nine. His formal studies were undertaken at the College of William and Mary and the Juilliard School of
Read more Music. During World War II, Gerhardt, known to his friends simply as Chuck, was a chaplain's assistant. At the conclusion of the conflict, he enrolled at the universities of Illinois and Southern California. Upon graduation, he was hired by RCA Victor to transfer old recordings by legendary artists such as Enrico Caruso and British pianist Artur Schnabel for issue on the new LP formatted vinyl records. He soon advanced to the mixing and assembly of new recordings by such artists as Sir Adrian Boult, Leopold Stokowski, Massimo Freccia, Alexander Gibson, René Leibowitz, Erich Leindsorf, Charles Münch, Fritz Reiner, and James Levine. Gerhardt met and became friends with many of these legendary conductors. Arturo Toscanini, who had created the NBC Symphony for RCA Victor, worked with Gerhardt for several years and encouraged him in the direction of a conducting career.

In 1955, Gerhardt left RCA Victor and began production work for the American Westminster Company in London and Vienna. When the company went bankrupt, Gerhardt worked briefly for Bell Sound producing the recordings of several pop music artists like Eddie Fischer.

In 1960, Gerhardt returned to RCA Victor and, together with Kenneth Wilkinson, produced a series of classical music albums that featured well-known artists for Reader's Digest. The first series of 12 LPs was entitled The Festival of Light.

In 1961, Gerhardt began the work that was to make him legendary when, substituting for a contracted conductor who had to cancel at the last moment, he led the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with a pencil at a recording session in the Walthamstow Assembly Hall. By 1964, Gerhardt had assembled, together with Sydney Sax, an orchestra they named the National Philharmonic, which brought together many of the finest musicians in London. With this group, Gerhardt created more than 600 albums for Reader's Digest over the next 12 years. In 1968, Gerhardt recorded the first of his albums of film scores, entitled Great Music from the Movies, which included a 17-minute suite arranged by Gerhardt of Korngold's music for the film King's Row. In 1972, because of the success of the film music arrangements, RCA contracted Gerhardt to produce a series of recordings, entitled Classic Film Scores. The first of these was the music for the film Sea Hawk by Erich Wolfgang Korngold. The composer's son, George Korngold, became the producer for the 12-album series, which included music by Alfred Newman, Max Steiner, Franz Waxman, Dimitri Tiomkin, Bernard Herrmann, and John Williams. Gerhardt used the National Philharmonic and prepared suites of the music when the original composer had not done so. Gerhardt would meet with the composers and discuss with them the forms these arrangements should take, to remain faithful to their intentions. Many of Gerhardt's suites continue to be used in concert performances. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 43 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    I Don't Like Classical Music, But I Kinda Like This!
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 74698 Release Date: 06/17/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Carl Orff,  Richard Wagner,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Nigel Woodhouse,  Paul Meyer,  Kolja Blacher,  Eric Le Sage  ... 
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner,  Eduardo Mata,  Gustav Kuhn,  Mark Stephenson  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Chorus  ... 
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  • 2.
    Play It Again: Classic Sound Of Hollywood
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 303384 Release Date: 04/01/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Waxman,  Dimitri Tiomkin,  Daniele Amfitheatrof,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt,  Maurice Jarre,  Esa-Pekka Salonen,  Elmer Bernstein  ... 
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  • 3.
    English Accents: Oboe Players In England During The 1950s
    Label: Oboe Classics   Catalog: 2027 Release Date: 01/14/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frederick Delius,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Winfield,  Leonard Brain,  Sidney Sutcliffe,  Edward Selwyn  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli,  Geraint Jones,  John Minchinton,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dennis Brain Wind Ensemble,  Collegium Musicum Londinii,  London Baroque Ensemble  ... 
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  • 4.
    Citizen Kane: Classic Film Scores Of Bernard Herrmann
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81264 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bernard Herrmann
    Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa,  Joaquín Achúcarro
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Classic Film Scores: Bette Davis
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81272 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Steiner,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Franz Waxman,  Alfred Newman
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Classic Film Scores: Elizabeth And Essex
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81266 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
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  • 7.
    Classic Film Scores: Now, Voyager
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81270 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Steiner
    Performer:  Earl Wild
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
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  • 8.
    Classic Film Scores: Spellbound
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81269 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Miklós Rózsa
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
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  • 9.
    Classic Film Scores: Sunset Boulevard
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 81265 Release Date: 03/01/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Waxman
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
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  • 10.
    Captain Blood - Classic Film Scores For Errol Flynn
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77934 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Steiner,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Franz Waxman,  Hugo Friedhofer
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 11.
    Captain From Castile - Classic Film Scores Of Alfred Newman
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77936 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alfred Newman
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Casablanca - Classic Film Scores For Humphrey Bogart
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77937 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Steiner,  Franz Waxman,  Friedrich Hollaender,  Victor Young  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 13.
    Gone With The Wind - Max Steiner's Classic Film Score
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77935 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Steiner
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Lost Horizon - Classic Film Scores Of Dimitri Tiomkin
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77933 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Dimitri Tiomkin
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 15.
    The Sea Hawk - Classic Film Scores Of Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 77932 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 16.
    Label: Time/Life Music   Catalog: 25052 Release Date: 09/15/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Traditional,  Lowell Mason,  Felix Mendelssohn,  James R. Murray  ... 
    Performer:  William Davis,  Patricia Spero
    Conductor:  Peter Knight,  Charles Gerhardt,  John McCarthy,  Larry Dalton  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Richmond Brass Ensemble,  Westminster Brass Ensemble,  Coventry Strings
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  • 17.
    James Galway - Celebrating 70: A Collection Of Personal Favorites
    Label: Cbs Masterworks   Catalog: 742201 Release Date: 07/28/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Albert Franz Doppler,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Elton John,  Henry Mancini  ... 
    Performer:  Phillip Moll,  Jeanne Galway,  James Galway,  Sarah Cunningham  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt,  Vincent Fanuele,  Henry Mancini,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Galway Pops Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields  ... 
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  • 18.
    50 Classics For Relaxation / Ingman, Gerhardt, Gamley, Et Al
    Label: Time/Life Music   Catalog: 24742 Release Date: 06/30/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jules Massenet,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johann Paul A. Martini  ... 
    Performer:  Keith Harvey,  José Luis Garcia,  Larry Dalton,  Skaila Kanga  ... 
    Conductor:  David Firman,  Franck Pourcel,  Charles Gerhardt,  Eric Hammerstein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Franck Pourcel Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 19.
    Music For Fitness
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 729035 Release Date: 06/24/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Paul Dukas,  Manuel de Falla,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Julian Lloyd Webber,  Anthony Marwood,  Jose Maria Gallardo Del Rey,  Gisbert Näther  ... 
    Conductor:  Tadeusz Wojciechowski,  Leonard Slatkin,  Charles Gerhardt,  Nicholas McGegan  ... 
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  • 20.
    Sunset Boulevard - Classic Film Scores Of Franz Waxman
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 7017 Release Date: 06/04/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Waxman
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 21.
    Spectacular World Of Classic Film Scores / Gerhardt, National PO
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 2792 Release Date: 05/13/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bernard Herrmann,  Dimitri Tiomkin,  Franz Waxman,  Miklós Rózsa  ... 
    Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 22.
    Themes From Academy Award Winners
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 60966 Release Date: 11/13/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henry Mancini,  Maurice Jarre,  Dimitri Tiomkin,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Conductor:  Henry Mancini,  Arthur Fiedler,  Charles Gerhardt,  David Raksin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Mancini Chorus,  Mancini Orchestra,  Boston Pops  ... 
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  • 23.
    Stephen Foster Song Collection / White, Gerhardt
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 5853 Release Date: 06/25/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Stephen Foster
    Performer:  Robert White
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 24.
    Bizet : Symphony No. 1, L'arlesienne Suite Nos 1 & 2 / Munch, Gerhardt, Rpo
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 4090 Release Date: 08/16/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Georges Bizet
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt,  Charles Munch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra London,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 25.
    God Bless America / Leontyne Price, Et Al
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63895 Release Date: 11/20/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Stafford Smith,  Martin Luther,  John Rosamond Johnson,  Irving Berlin  ... 
    Performer:  Leontyne Price
    Conductor:  Charles Gerhardt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Ambrosian Singers
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