George Duning: Master of Tenderness

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Saturday, January 26, 2013

George Duning (1908-2000) may not have the most familiar name in soundtrack composing, but his music is striking and unforgettable. Duning could write well for most any type of story, but he excelled at conveying tenderness. His ability to evoke empathy opened the hearts of millions of movie-goers to the characters in "Picnic," "From Here to Eternity," "Toys in the Attic," and other films.

Duning balanced a contemporary musical sensibility with a sense of restraint and sincerity, to make affecting, deeply-felt music that avoids overt sentimentality. David Garland presents tender highlights from several of Duning's film and TV scores.

Comments [8]

Jason from Cal

His score for the Star Trek episode 'The Empath' is very touching and ranks with his motion picture scores.

Mar. 08 2013 05:57 PM
Tom Crowley from Mattituck Long Island

David,,,,,,Forgot how great your shows are.......wonderful research and Musical taste , that touches us all listening .
listened to you on WKCR....years ago,,,,and always learned more about music , that I will always have .

Mar. 06 2013 06:18 PM
LES from Washington DC

3:10 to Yuma sounds like a cross between Greensleeves and Almost Like Being in Love, to my ear.

Feb. 03 2013 05:44 PM
Dick Clark

...........Thank You!..........Thank You".......Thank You!........

....for playing the selection from 3:10 TO of favorite westerns and scores..........

....would have loved to hear the ending track with Frankie Laine singing the title song.....and the memory of Lorna Dana standing on the carriage face to the rain....waving to Van Heflin and Glenn Ford....on the train....the 3:10 TO YUMA....................


Feb. 02 2013 10:46 AM


May I ask, is there a problem with the archive audio for the Jan. 19th and 26th episodes of "Movies N The Radio"? I can't seem to access these shows via the web site.


Jan. 31 2013 05:07 PM
Stephanie J. Hughes from Manchester, NJ

This music is just beautiful. PICNIC's score was so dead-on perfect. A really warm evening. I have so many memories of that - BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE, too.
Thank you, David!!!

Jan. 26 2013 10:01 PM
CMP from NYC

Fascinating to see how Mr. Duning fashioned an entire career on one phrase, with variations, of George Gershwin's "I love you, Porgie." And another song, from another operetta, in your second selection that fled my memory when I discovered "Porgie" in it, too! Just goes to show....

Just like Bach, fashioning so many phrases, in works like The St. Matthew's Passion, et al., on a haunting phrase from Vivaldi's "Winter."

Perhaps you should mention these "borrowings"?

Jan. 26 2013 09:28 PM
Paul from New Jersey

Dear David:

I have to correct you on your analogy of "Then Came Bronson". It was not a derivative of "The Fugitive" starring David Janssen. "Then Came Bronson" was a 2-wheel version of "Route 66", which featured 2 characters drifting around the country in a 4-wheel Chevy Corvette. So you could say, "Then Came Bronson" was half as good as "Route 66"!

Best Regards,

Jan. 26 2013 09:22 PM

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