George Bassman (7 February 1914 – 26 June 1997) was a music arranger and composer on Broadway and in Hollywood. He worked on the 1939 MGM film version of The Wizard of Oz.

Bassman is credited as one of the music arrangers on the film, working under composer Herbert Stothart. Yet Bassman also composed some pieces of music for the movie under Stothart's guidance. It was Bassman who quoted the popular song "In the Shade of the Old Apple Tree," in the music for the fighting trees scene.

Most notably, Bassman composed the one and a half minutes of music that accompany the tornado sequence. Bassman later explained that the task took him three weeks. He abandoned five versions of that scene's music; it was only the sixth that he judged acceptable. Arranging the composition for orchestra required another two weeks of work.[1]


  1. Aljean Harmetz, The Making of the Wizard of Oz, New York, Delta edition, 1989; pp. 92-3.
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