The Tragic Death Of Willy Wonka Composer Leslie Bricusse

Leslie Bricusse, famous composer for a number of well-known films, including the score from "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory," and music from "Home Alone," "Doctor Dolittle," "Hook," and the "James Bond" series, has died at the age of 90. The sad news came from Bricusse's son Adam, who took to Instagram on October 19 to mourn his late dad.

In a touching tribute, he wrote, "My Dearest Father , passed away peacefully this morning....Please raise a glass for him ...Love .... Forever.... RIP Dad ....". Adam also added a lyric from "Feeling Good," one of his father's songs that was written for the 1964 musical, "The Roar of the Greasepaint – The Smell of the Crowd," and famously covered by Nina Simone.  The apt lyric read, "Sleep in peace when the day is done ... And I'm feeling good ...". Adam did not reveal a cause of death in his post.

Adam's Instagram announcement was met with an outpouring of love and condolences from social media users and fans of the late composer. "Offering my deepest sympathies to you and your family, my friend. Much love," one follower wrote, while another penned, "My heartfelt sadness for you, your family and indeed for all of us on the passing of this towering talent." 

Actor Joan Collins, who was close friends with the composer and his wife, also paid tribute to Bricusse on Instagram, calling him "one of the giant songwriters of our time." In fact, Bricusse's career spanned over five decades, in which he achieved incredible accomplishments and won him top honors in music and film.

Leslie Bricusse won multiple Oscars for his work as a composer

Throughout his career, Leslie Bricusse dazzled the world with his witty and melodic compositions, winning Academy Awards on more than one occasion, as well as a Grammy. Per his website, the London native took home a Grammy for the song, "What Kind of Fool Am I," which he wrote for the musical, "Stop the World – I Want to Get Off." A few years later, he was awarded with an Oscar for the song-score of the musical "Victor/Victoria," winning an additional Oscar for "Talk to the Animals," which he wrote for "Doctor Dolittle" in 1967. He also scored 10 additional Oscar nominations throughout his career, including for one of his most well-known works — the score of "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory," as well as the fan-favorite "Somewhere in My Memory," from 1990's "Home Alone."

Bricusse understood the importance of combining lyrics and musical composition in just the right way to create an auditory masterpiece. In an interview with the Musical Theatre Review, Bricusse discussed his creative process, stating that he had "developed a way of getting melodies down" with his "own homemade method." He added that he thought of himself as the "triple threat" because he does it all, writing "the book, the music, and the lyrics." Ultimately, Bricusse considered himself "lucky" for the career he lived.