Alan Menken (born July 22, 1949) is an American musical theatre and film composer and pianist.
Menken is best known for his numerous scores for films produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios. His scores for The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and Pocahontas have each won him two Academy Awards. He also composed the scores for The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, Home on the Range, Enchanted, and Tangled. Menken has collaborated on several occasions with lyricists including Howard Ashman, Tim Rice, Glenn Slater, and Stephen Schwartz. Having won a total of eight Oscars, he has won more Oscars than any other living individual. He has been Oscar-nominated a total of nineteen times.
Menken was born in Manhattan into a Jewish family, the son of Judith and Norman Menken, a dentist. He developed an interest in music at an early age, studying piano and violin. He went to New Rochelle High School in New Rochelle, New York. He attended college as a pre-med student, but later changed his focus to music at NYU Steinhardt. After college, he attended the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater Workshop. He performed frequently in local clubs and worked as a composer of jingles and songs and as an accompanist.