Fred Spielman - composer, pianist. Born Fritz Spielman, 20 Nov 1906, Vienna, Austria, died 21st March 1997. He was educated at the Academy of Music, Vienna where he studied with Josef Meyer, Josef Marx & Franz Schmidt and received the Master Degree. He came to USA in 1939. He changed his name to Fred, rapidly mastered the English language and embarked on a successful career. Spielman enjoyed a career as a concert pianist and composer for films and musical theatre.
A member of the ASCAP (American Association of Composers, Authors & Publishers) since 1942, he worked in Hollywood from 1945 to 1955 composing music for the movies.
He received the ASCAP Award for his popular hit songs and a Grammy Nomination for Paper Roses (words by Janice Torre; of which several recordings were made, including the 1960 Anita Bryant version; revived in 1973 by Marie Osmond). Other well known recordings of his songs are: Shepherd Serenade - Bing Crosby, One Finger Melody - Frank Sinatra, A Purple Cow - Doris Day, If Love Is Good To Me - Nat King Cole and I Don t Want To - Elvis Presley (in the 1962 film, GIRLS! GIRLS! GIRLS!) and It Only Hurts For A Little While (words by Mack David; a hit for the Ames Bros in 1956, revived by Margo Smith in 1978).
He composed the score for the first Dickens musical, THE STINGIEST MAN IN TOWN, (SCROOGE) (lyrics by Janice Torre) for NBC TV in 1956, which featured opera stars, Robert Weedy and Patrice Munsel; Walter Matthau played Scrooge in the 1978 stage production.
In his later life Spielman returned to Neo-classical composition. A Choral Orchestra Cantata and And The Lord Said being performed on concert stages and in churches.
Fred Spielman received an Honorary Professorship from the Austrian Government in 1975 and in 1987, The Silver Cross of Honor for his contribution to the arts and artistic relations between Austria and The United States.