Ivor Slaney (Ivor Ernst Slaney)

Ivor Slaney

Ivor Ernst Slaney (born 27 May 1921 in West Bromwich, United Kingdom, d. 20 March 1998, Southampton, United Kingdom) was a prolific musical composer and conductor, notable for his work in film, television and radio. Ivor Slaney was educated at the Royal College of Music, and married Mary D Ludlow pianist Dolores Ventura in 1948. His father, Ernst Wallace Slaney, was the principal ‘cellist in the Bournemouth Municipal Orchestra in the 1920s and 1930s under Sir Dan Godfrey. As a youngster Ivor joined the choir of St Stephen’s Church, Bournemouth where he was also taught by Percy Whitlock, the church’s Director of Music and a colleague of Ernst Slaney at the Bournemouth Pavilion. According to Whitlock’s diary, Ivor was known as ‘Tiny’. Ivor’s mother was Grace Elizabeth Arney (b 22 April 1893, died July 1988). She married Ernst in Bristol in 1920. In 1935, aged 14, Ivor entered Kneller Hall, the British Army’s School of Music. Ivor Slaney’s son, Adrian E Slaney, was born in 1950. In later life Ivor Slaney lived in Milford on Sea, Hampshire. His best-known works include “Top Dog”, which was used as the theme music for the BBC radio comedy series The Men from the Ministry and Carlos’ Theme (from The Sentimental Agent) for which he won an Ivor Novello award. Ivor Slaney also composed hundreds of mood music pieces, fanfares and “stings”. Many examples are available on the DeWolfe site (see below). He also wrote the music for several Hammer Films, including 36 Hours (1953), The Gambler and the Lady (1953), Spaceways (1953), and The House Across the Lake (1954), as well as the scores to The Strange Case of the End of Civilization as We Know It (1977), Prey (1977), Terror (1978), and Death Ship (1980). Slaney was composer and musical director for the 1970-71 British children’s TV series Here Come the Double Deckers.


  • May, 27, 1921
  • United Kingdom
  • Midlands, England


  • March, 20, 1998
  • United Kingdom
  • Southampton, Hampshire, England

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