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Classical 18/10/2001

Composer Jay Livingston Dies at 86

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LOS ANGELES (AP) - Oscar-winning composer and lyricist Jay Livingston, whose collaboration with Ray Evans led to such hits as "Silver Bells,'' "Que Sera, Sera'' and "Mona Lisa,'' died Wednesday. He was 86.

Livingston, whose songwriting partnership with Evans spanned 64 years, died of pneumonia at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, family spokesman Frank Liberman said.

Often called the last of the great songwriters, Livingston and Evans had seven Academy Award nominations and won three - in 1948 for "Buttons and Bows'' in the film "The Paleface,'' in 1950 for "Mona Lisa'' in "Captain Carey, USA,'' and in 1956 for "Que Sera, Sera'' in "The Man Who Knew Too Much.''

They wrote the television theme songs for "Bonanza'' and "Mr. Ed,'' and were honored by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for "the most performed music for film and TV for 1996.''

The members of the Songwriters Hall of Fame also produced such hits as "The Cat and the Canary'' from the 1945 film "Why Girls Leave Home,'' "Tammy'' from the 1957 movie "Tammy and the Bachelor,'' "Almost in Your Arms'' from the 1958 film "Houseboat'' and the title song of the 1964 film "Dear Heart.''

Livingston was born on March 28, 1915, in the Pittsburgh suburb of McDonald. He met Evans in 1937 at the University of Pennsylvania, where they were both students.

The team's final project was the recording, "Michael Feinstein Sings the Livingston and Evans Song Book,'' due for 2002 release.

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