Rudy Schrager

RUDY SCHRAGER DIES

As a freelancer not tied to any studio, Schrager continued to find work after MONSIEUR VERDOUX, though usually scoring “B” pictures. With the new threat of television wreaking havoc on the film industry, the musicians union was not allowing its members to work in the new medium. As a result, Schrager became involved with David Chudnow, a music director and producer who, with a nod to music practices during the silent days, specialized in assembling scores for films. Schrager joined a team of composers who would write new music or adapt music they had previously written and used. Chudnow recorded the music in Europe where the labor was cheaper than in Hollywood and provided pseudonyms for his composers to protect them from the wrath of the musicians union. Schrader took over as musical director on the Lux Radio Theatre from Louis Silvers in 1949 and continued in that position for four years with the Lux Video Theatre. In addition to numerous film scores, Schrager composed for television, including such popular Westerns as Rawhide, Gunsmoke, and The Big Valley before dying in Los Angeles just days shy of his 83rd birthday.

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