The Passing of a Television Music Legend
Renowned British composer Laurie Johnson, who created some of the most iconic television theme tunes and film scores of the 20th century, has passed away at the age of 96. Among his most famous compositions are the unforgettable themes for popular classic shows like The Avengers, The Professionals, Animal Magic, and This is Your Life. His family announced his death last Tuesday and expressed that his musical legacy will forever resonate in our hearts.
A Career Spanning Decades
Laurie Johnson was an incredibly prolific composer between the 1960s and 1980s, creating dozens of catchy and memorable themes and scores throughout his career. Born in North London, he began making music at a young age and went on to become one of Britain’s most cherished talents.
Throughout his illustrious career, Johnson composed numerous memorable scores, themes, and soundtracks that enriched our lives through film, television, theatre, and radio. His work helped shape the soundtrack of an entire generation, with countless fans still appreciating and recognizing his timeless tunes today.
An Impressive Portfolio Of Work
- The Avengers: One of Johnson’s most iconic creations remains the theme tune for the beloved 1960s TV series The Avengers starring Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg. Instantly catchy and defining of an era, the tune has become synonymous with the show itself.
- The Professionals: Another hit television series from the late 1970s, The Professionals featured a hard-hitting, action-packed score by Johnson that captured the energy and excitement of the show.
- Animal Magic: A popular children’s show from the 1960s through the 1980s, Animal Magic was known for its playful and whimsical theme music composed by Johnson that perfectly complemented the lighthearted tone of the program.
- This is Your Life: As one of Britain’s most popular biographical television series, This is Your Life required an evocative score to match the gravity of each episode’s content. Johnson’s work helped strike the perfect emotional chord for viewers.
A Legacy Beyond Television
In addition to his influential television themes, Laurie Johnson also made a significant impact in the world of film. His music was featured in renowned films such as Dr Strangelove, Tiger Bay, It Shouldn’t Happen to a Vet, and many others. With a body of work spanning different media platforms, Johnson cemented his status as a multifaceted and versatile composer.
Musical Influence on Theatre and Radio
Beyond film and television, Johnson’s musical prowess extended into theatre and radio as well. From adaptations of popular stage productions to haunting radio plays, Johnson consistently demonstrated his ability to create soundscapes that elevated the stories being told.
Tributes and Lasting Memory
As news of Johnson’s passing spreads, tributes have poured in from fans, fellow composers, actors, and other industry professionals alike. Many remember him not only for his incredible musical contributions but also for his kindness and generosity of spirit.
His family released a touching statement following his passing, sharing that Johnson was dearly loved by many and will be sorely missed by his wife Dot, daughter Sarah, son-in-law Richard, and grandson Lawrence.
Preserving Laurie Johnson’s Legacy
In the wake of his passing, listeners around the world have revisited Laurie Johnson’s extensive catalogue of work and celebrated his undeniable impact on music and entertainment. Though he may be gone, his memory will live on through his timeless compositions that continue to evoke cherished memories for generations of fans.
As we say goodbye to this legendary composer, let us take a moment to appreciate the incredible musical legacy Laurie Johnson has left behind, forever etched in our hearts and minds as the indelible soundtrack of an unforgettable era.