Vladimir Cosma

Vladimir Cosma (born April 13, 1940 in Bucharest), renowned composer, conductor and violinist.

He was born in a family of musicians - his father Teodor (Theodor) Cosma was a pianist and conductor, mother was a composer and his uncle Edgar Cosma was a composer and conductor. Cosma studied music from his early years onward, eventually attending the National Conservatory in Bucharest (from which he graduated with two first prizes, for violin and composition). In 1963 he went to Paris to advance his studies at the French Conservatory (École Normale de Musique de Paris, under Nadia Boulanger's guidance), where, in addition to his classical background, he developed an interest in jazz, folk music, and film music. Between 1964 and 1967 he toured the world as a concert violinist, visiting the USA, Latin America, and South East Asia. A meeting with popular film composer Michel Legrand became the first step towards his future career. Cosma always mentions Legrand's importance, though he also admits the influence of such composers as Burt Bacharach and Henri Mancini.

In 1967 he began his long-running partnership with film director Yves Robert, for whom he scored the international hits Alexandre le Bienheureux (1967), Le Grand Blond Avec Une Chaussure Noire (1972), and Le Retour du Grand Blond (1974) as well as the critically acclaimed dramas La Gloire de Mon Père and Le Chateau de ma Mère (both in 1990). He also wrote the music for several comedies directed by Francis Veber and Gerard Oury, starring such hit French comedians as Pierre Richard and Louis de Funès. One of his biggest international hits was the Eric Satie-inspired soundtrack for Diva (1981), for which he was awarded his first Cesar (the French equivalent of the Oscar). He received another Cesar for Le Bal (1983) and the main instrumental theme from it became a substantial hit worldwide. Among the other awards given to Vladimir Cosma are the Sept d'Or, the French TV award, for L' été '36 (1986) and a Gran Prix at Cannes Film Festival for the entire body of his work.

According IMDB, he has composed the music for more than 200 movies and TV series. Also, it is highly unusual for a film composer to have many of his scores compiled in a massive 23-CD anthology released by a major label, but that is precisely what happened in France where Sony Music put together 63 scores by Vladimir Cosma in a series appropriately titled Cosma Cinema Collection.