Top 10 Music and Entertainment Partnerships

1. Gilbert & Sullivan met in 1869 after Sullivan had written the music for Box & Cox and had their first major success in 1875 with Trial by Jury. Their talent for comic opera led to HMS Pinafore, Mikado, Iolanthe, Gondoliers and Pirates of Penzance. Sullivan died at the age of 58 and is buried in St Paul’s Cathedral.

2. Rogers & Hammerstein worked together for the first time on Oklahoma in 1943 winning a Pulitzer. Thos was followed by ‘South Pacific’, ‘Carousel’, ‘The King and I’ and ‘The Sound of Music’. Hammerstein died in 1960 aged 65 from cancer and Rodgers in 1979 at aged 77.

3. John Lennon & Paul McCartney the song writing partnership of the Beatles. The group in 1956 was originally The Quarrymen, then Johnny and the Moondogs, Silver Beatles and finally The Beatles. Together they wrote ‘I wanna be your man’ an early hit for the Rolling Stones. All 17 no1 hits were written by John and Paul except ‘Lady Madona’ which was Paul’s alone.

4. Simon & Garfunkel performed together in 1955 but it wasn’t until ‘The Sound of Silence’ in 1965 that they had their first No1.

5. Barnum & Bailey the circus showmen who formed ‘The Greatest Show on Earth’ in 1881. Barnum a great publicist had already been a showman for 40 years. The circus was sold to Ringling Bros in 1907 but the name still evokes the smells and experience of the circus.

6. Mick Jagger & Keith Richards two leading members of the Rolling Stones and the key songwriting partnership. I can’t get no ‘Satisfaction’, The Last Time and Get Off my Cloud are some of the well remembered songs.

7. Goscinny and Uderzo may not be household names but the cartoon characters they created will be. Asterix and Obelix were launched in 1959. Every story begins ‘The year is 50BC. Gaul is entirely occupied by the Romans. Well not entirely…’. I particularly like the Garrison towns of Aquarium, Laudanum and Compendium.

8. Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers partnered up to dance when Fred’s sister Adele gave up the act to marry an English aristocrat. Leaving the stage for the film industry the first screen test report said ‘Can’t act, Can’t sing, Slightly bald Can dance a little.

9. Nureyev & Fonteyn were the worlds greatest classical ballet dou from 1962 when Margo would be 43 and Rudolf 23. Biographer writ ‘Nureyev was applauded to within an inch of his life’.

10. Mills and Boon are the world famous romantic fiction publishers. Mills and Boon met in 1903 at Methuen publishers and 5 years later formed their own company which now publishes 720 new books per year.

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