Peter Knight (composer)
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Peter Knight (23 June 1917 – 30 July 1985) was an English musical arranger, conductor and composer.
Knight was born in Exmouth, Devon, England. He worked with Independent Television light entertainment stars from 'Spot The Tune' (1956) with Jackie Rae and Marion Ryan to the comedy series 'Home to Roost' (1985). He also composed the scores to the feature films Curse of the Crimson Altar (1968, Boris Karloff) and Sunstruck (1972, Harry Secombe). In between, the highlights of his career were perhaps:
- Conductor for many songs for Scott Walker's 1960's period
- Orchestra director for many episodes of The Morecambe and Wise show (1969–77)
- Conductor for The Last Goon Show of All 1972
- Orchestrator of the music for the Roman Polanski film Tess (1979)
- Conductor and orchestrator for the film Ghost Story (1981)
- Orchestrator and conductor of the music for the Jean-Jacques Annaud film Quest for Fire (1981)
- Orchestrator of the music for the film The Dark Crystal (1982)
After producing countless vocal scores, Peter Knight was commissioned to produce full orchestrations for various artists and soon had his own orchestra The Peter Knight Orchestra.
Following his death, Yorkshire television launched the annual Peter Knight Award to honour excellence in musical arranging.
His involvement with pop music was varied. Peter Knight became famous for his rich lush orchestration, best illustrated by the orchestral sections of The Moody Blues' Days of Future Passed. Later on he continued his work with members of The Moody Blues—Justin Hayward and John Lodge—on 3 songs on the record Blue Jays released in 1975.
Richard Carpenter invited him to fly to Los Angeles in 1977 in order to generate a similar sound for The Carpenters "Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft" (1977). He gave a similar treatment to The Carpenters version of "Don't Cry For Me Argentina". Knight also collaborated with The Carpenters on their two Christmas Special Television Shows in 1977 and 1978, for which he was the principal arranger. On the special edition CD of the music from these two shows, Peter arranged three of the extended medleys and ten of the single charts.
Knight also wrote arrangements for the King's Singers, including the Airwave song "You are the New Day", now a best-selling title in the USA.
Knight recorded a single "Within You, Without You", the George Harrison song from the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album, released under the name Peter Knight and His Orchestra. This was part of a project to release the entire album in an orchestral version. It was released in 1967 on the Mercury label.
- Theme tune for Thank Your Lucky Stars (1961)
- The Flight of the Heron (drama series) (1968)
- Duty Free (TV comedy series 1984-86)
- Home to Roost (TV comedy series 1986-89)