Thomas Newman Performs “Speak So I Can Hear You”
Despite being one of the most acclaimed movie composers alive, Thomas Newman (1917, American Beauty, Shawshank Redemption) still goes to the piano to make music that is not destined for a screen. “Speak So I Can Hear You” was written for his late mother, Martha.
Thomas Newman is one of the most prominent film composers of recent years. He has composed music for more than 50 motion pictures and television series and earned fifteen Academy Award nominations and six Grammy Awards.
Newman’s father was a nine-time Academy Award–winning composer; his brother, two uncles, and a cousin have also written music for television and film. Newman received a B.A. from Yale University in 1977 and a master’s in music from Yale in 1978. His uncle Lionel, music director at 20th Century Fox, gave Newman his first scoring assignment for the 1978 law school drama Paper Chase. Newman’s first film score, for Reckless (1984), began a career in film composition that includes work on such classics as The Shawshank Redemption, American Beauty, The Green Mile, Finding Nemo, two James Bond films, and the war film 1917. He also composed the theme songs for Boston Public, Six Feet Under, and other acclaimed TV series.