The 71st Emmy Awards featured a major gaffe during the In Memoriam tribute when a photo of living composer Leonard Slatkin was used to honor the late André Previn. The Television Academy issued the following statement reacting to the In Memoriam segment error: “The producers for the 71st Emmy Awards, the Television Academy and FOX sincerely apologize for this error. All In Memoriam mentions on the Television Academy’s website feature accurate imagery for Mr. Previn.”
Previn was nominated for 11 Academy Awards throughout his career, winning the Best Original Score prize for “Gigi,” “Porgy and Bess,” “Irma la Douce,” and “My Fair Lady.” Additional movies composed by Previn include “All in a Night’s Work,” “Designing Woman,” “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse,” and “Paint Your Wagon.” The composer passed away in February at the age of 89. The 75-year-old Slatkin is the Music Director Laureate of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Directeur Musical Honoraire of the Orchestre National de Lyon.
Slatkin originally reacted to the mishap on social media, writing to his Twitter followers, “I saw that the Emmys posted a photo of me ‘In Memoriam’ rather than the intended Andre Previn. Andre deserved better. I had the opportunity to introduce him when he received the Kennedy Center Honors. Perhaps he was paying me back for a couple stories I told about him. Andre, R.I.P.” In an interview with the Detroit Free Press, Slatkin added that Previn “would have been very amused” by the error. “He had a droll and dry wit,” he said.
The Emmys 2019 In Memoriam tribute also included Stan Lee, Luke Perry, Valerie Harper, Penny Marshall, Cokie Roberts, John Singleton, Doris Day, Gloria Vanderbilt, Tim Conway, and more. Halsey performed a rendition of Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time” while photos of the late TV industry veterans aired on screen.
Additional reporting by Libby Hill.