Award winning documentary filmmaker Murray Lerner died September 2 as a result of kidney failure in New York City at the age of 90.
He was born May 8, 1927 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and graduated from Harvard University in 1948.
Lerner was a film director, writer, producer, cinematographer, and sometime camera operator. In a career that lasted some 50 years he was involved with “Secrets of the Reef”, the “NET Journal”, “Festival”, “Message to Love: The Isle of Wight Festival”, “Listening to You: The Who at the Isle of Wight Festival”, “Newport Folk Festival”, “The Other Side of the Mirror: Bob Dylan at the Newport Folk Festival”, “Leonard Cohen: Live at the Isle of Wight 1970”, “Drusen”, “Taste: What’s Going On – Live at the Isle of Wight 1970”, “Sea Dream”, “Magic Journeys”, “The Birth of a Band”, “From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China”, “Jimi Hendrix at the Isle of Wight”, “Nothing is Easy: Jethro Tull Live at the Isle of Wight 1970”, “Amazing Journey: The Story of The Who”, and “Miles Electric: A Different Kind of Blue”.
Along with his films about The Who, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Jimi Hendrix, and Jethro Tull; Lerner filmed the Moody Blues, Joan Baez, Pete Seeger, Odetta, Peter, Paul and Mary, and Emerson Lake and Palmer. Speaking on his creative style Lerner once said in an interview, “I tried to make music with the camera, to have the camera be a participant of the action. The camera isn’t just a fly on the wall. My theory is that the only valid truth is the interaction between object and subject.”
Lerner earned his Aademy Award for the documentary “”From Mao to Mazart: Isaac Stern in China”.
He is survived by his wife of over 50 years Judith, son Noah, and two grandchildren.
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