Menken, Alan

Menken, Alan Composer; joined Disney in 1987 to work on The Little Mermaid. Since then, he has composed the music for Disney classics such as Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, writing the music for such memorable songs as “Under the Sea, ” “Beauty and the Beast, ” and “A Whole New World, ” all of which won him Academy Awards. Partnered first with Howard Ashman and later with Tim Rice, he helped engineer the rebirth of popularity of Disney animation in the 1980s. He also wrote the music for the songs in Newsies and Polly. In 1995, he joined with lyricist Stephen Schwartz to write the songs for Pocahontas, winning the Academy Award for the score and “Colors of the Wind.” The following year, he partnered with Schwartz again for The Hunchback of Notre Dame and in 1997 with David Zippel for Hercules. He wrote the score and songs for Home on the Range. With eight Oscars for his Disney work, Alan is second only to Walt Disney. He was named a Disney Legend in 2001.