The composer who wrote the theme for the James Bond films has died aged 94.
A statement on his official website said: “It is with sadness that we share the news that Monty Norman passed away on July 11, 2022 after a short illness.”
He began his career singing in big bands before building a career as a writer for musicals and films such as Songbook, Poppy and Make Me An Offer.
Norman then appeared in variety shows alongside comedy actors including Tony Hancock and Spike Milligan.
He and comedian Benny Hill later did a joint variety show on the road, taking turns in the headline slot depending on whether the city they were in favored comedy or music.
Moving on to composing, he wrote songs for Sir Cliff Richard and early rock ‘n’ roll Sir Tommy Steele, as well as lyrics for stage shows such as Make Me An Offer and Expresso Bongo.
But Norman is best known for the first goal James Bond film, 1962’s Dr No starring Sir Sean Connery, which features the famous theme that is repeated in the next 24 films.
However, the producers were not satisfied with Norman’s arrangement and assigned a young John Barry to rearrange the piece.
Barry later claimed that he had actually written the headline, but Norman won a defamation case against The Sunday Times for publishing such a claim.
He went on to work throughout the 1980s and beyond with Songbook in both the West End and Broadway, winning the Evening Standard, Olivier and Ivor Novello Best Musical Awards.
In that decade, his pantomime musical Poppy ran for over a year at London’s Barbican and Adelphi theaters and won a Swet – now an Olivier – for best musical.
James Bond theme composer Monty Norman dies aged 94 | Ents & Arts News
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