The two-time Emmy winner says the orchestra has also been 'let go'

By Dan Snierson
August 31, 2017 at 01:52 PM EDT
Fox; Inset: Tommaso Boddi/WireImage
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The Simpsons producers have broken their silence on the dismissal of longtime composer Alf Clausen.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the team behind the veteran animated Fox comedy praised Clausen for his contributions to the show and indicated that he still will have ties to the animated Fox comedy in some capacity.

“We tremendously value Alf Clausen’s contributions to The Simpsons and he will continue to have an ongoing role in the show,” the producers said. “We remain committed to the finest in music for The Simpsons, absolutely including orchestral. This is the part where we would make a joke but neither Alf’s work nor the music of The Simpsons is treated as anything but seriously by us.”

Clausen, 76, joined the show in 1990 and conducted a 35-piece orchestra for every episode, a rarity in today’s TV world. Though the producers’ statement mentioned the show’s commitment to “orchestral,” it is unclear what that means: Clausen tweeted on Thursday that the orchestra members had also been “let go” in response to a question posed by the American Federation of Musicians. Representatives for Fox and the show had no comment.

Clausen has been nominated for 23 Emmys for his work on the show, winning twice. In addition to scoring all of the show’s scenes, he has written many iconic songs featured in the series, including “We Do (The Stonecutters’ Song)”, “See My Vest,” “Stop the Planet of the Apes, I Want to Get Off!” “We Put the Spring in Springfield,” and “They’ll Never Stop the Simpsons.”

Clausen’s last episode was the season 28 finale in May. Season 29 begins Oct. 1.

This post has been updated since its original publication.

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