04 October, 2007

"Ready when you are, Ronnie!"

Ten reasons to remember Ronnie Hazlehurst:

1) The multi-part mini-symphony that was his music for The Two Ronnies, from the glorious "bah! bah!" fanfare underneath the shimmering spectacles of the opening, to the scores for all those shot-on-film spoof sagas, to the pomp and circumstance of the closing credits.

2) The biiiiaaaooowww sound in the theme tune to Sorry.

3) His sterling work representing Britain in the Eurovision Song Contest, usually leading his orchestra dressed in regulation bow-tie and bowler hat, conducting with a crisply rolled umbrella.

4) The way he incorporated the bongs, sorry, the chimes and strikes of Big Ben into the theme for Yes, Minister, and then matching them perfectly with the earnest scraping of a wah-wah guitar.

5) Managing to make the music to Last Of The Summer Wine sound genuinely wistful.

6) Mustering a towering something out of the whimsical nothing that were the words "Blankety Blank", in the process transforming them into a national chant.

7) "Ready when you are, Ronnie!" Turning up every week to supply the (live) incidental music to the original Generation Game, all the while keeping his wits about him in readiness for a spontaneous Brucie shimmy or a spectacular miscue from Lal.

8) The everything *and* the kitchen sink soundscape that was the theme to Are You Being Served?

9) Insisting the opening music to Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em was actually the name of the programme in Morse Code, which might not have been strictly true, but at least added a dash of substance to an otherwise hollow noisy knockabout.

10) Managing to write a theme to accompany opening titles showing a man trying to drown himself at sea.

2 comments:

FeedbackReport said...

Surely the definitive Ronnie H moment was penning the ridiculous stings for the Two Ronnies' 'Tramps' sketches. Notice how he retained the general flavour of the parent show by given them entirely different opening and closing 'themes'...

Anonymous said...

I seem to remember that the theme to Yes Minister and To the Manor Born were suspiciously similar!