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Kurt Bestor (born 1958) is an American keyboardist and composer specializing in New Age, film scores, and jazz. He is known for his synthesizer-based Christmas music similar to Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, some of which were featured on the Weather Channel during the holiday season in the 1980s and '90s. His well known songs are "Prayer of the Children", "Mama don't you weep". He is also known for composing music for the 1993 movie Rigoletto, and for writing music for the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic games and for various official LDS Church videos.
Kurt Bestor was born in 1958 in Waukesha, Wisconsin. He took piano lessons from his mother as a child. His grandpa played the trumpet in Western Big bands and his uncle played with the trumpet in Jack Benny's band. Later on Kurt Bestor and his family moved to Orem, Utah in 1966, where he attended Orem High School and learned how to play the trumpet. When Bestor watched the 1975 film Jaws, he later recalled "I knew that's what I wanted to do when I saw Jaws during high school. I have made a goal to score films ever since." He decided to compose soundtracks for movies which he would do for The Buttercream Gang, Rigoletto He was also influenced by classical music.
In 1977 Bestor and his family joined the LDS Church. He later went on a two-year religious mission in Yugoslavia where, where he observed social problems such as homelessness, poverty and war, which would inspire his later song "Prayer of the Children." After his mission, Bestor married his first wife Melodie.
Bestor attended Brigham Young University to write his songs for student projects, and also composed music for the Sundance Film Institute's composer lab. He ultimately dropped out of BYU college to pursue a full-time musical career.
In 1988 Kurt Bestor composed the very first Christmas music using synthesizer music. He made Arius Christmas volume 1 released it on cassette and CD and it was a success in his career. Also The Weather Channel played Kurt Bestor's Christmas music in the months of December in the late 1980s and 1990s. He later went on to making Joyspring, Seasons, Evening Angels Arius Christmas volume 2 and the well known CD Innovators with his famous song Prayer of the Children who he composed with his best friend Sam Cardon. He also made Noel Christmas volume 3 and made Sketches with the song Mama don't you weep He also made music for the LDS Church videos and also composed the soundtrack for the 1993 movie Rigoletto and for the 2000 cartoon movie "The Scarecrow".
In 2000, Bestor and Melodie divorced. He quickly remarried to his second wife Holli Ammon, but a few years later got a second divorce which caused problems with being a member in good standing in the family-focused Mormon church. Despite the problems with his divorce. Later on Kurt Bestor married a third wife named Petrina and is now currently living with her. Kurt Bestor still performs at the Salt Lake Utah concerts and at the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He also wrote albums like Innovators II and music for the "Salt Lake City 2002 winter Olympics" He is troubled by the September 11, 2001 attacks and the Iraq War in the 2000s. Today he is still performing music in Salt Lake City concerts.