Stanley Myers (6 October 1930 – 9 November 1993) was a British film composer who scored over sixty films. He also wrote the guitar piece “Cavatina”.
Myers was born in Birmingham, Warwickshire, England; as a teenager he went to King Edward’s School in Edgbaston, a suburb of Birmingham.
Myers wrote incidental music for television: for example, The Reign of Terror, a 1964 serial in the television series Doctor Who; the theme to All Gas and Gaiters; and the theme for the BBC’s Question Time.
He is known for composing music for cult films House of Whipcord, Frightmare and House of Mortal Sin for filmmaker Peter Walker.
He is best known for “Cavatina” (1970), an evocative guitar piece that served as the signature theme for Michael Cimino’s 1978 film The Deer Hunter, and for which Myers won the Ivor Novello Award. A somewhat different version of this work, performed by John Williams, had appeared in The Walking Stick. And another version had lyrics added. Cleo Laine and Iris Williams, in separate recordings sung He Was Beautiful which helped to make “Cavatina” become even more popular.
During the 1980s, Myers worked frequently with director Stephen Frears. His score for Prick Up Your Ears (1987) won him a “Best Artistic Contribution” award at the Cannes Film Festival. He also scored several low budget features (Time Traveler, Blind Date, The Wind, Zero Boys) for director Nico Mastorakis, collaborating with Hans Zimmer. He won another Ivor Novello Award for his soundtrack to The Witches in 1991.
Myers died of cancer aged 63 in Kensington and Chelsea, London.