The Dam Busters (includes The Dam Busters March)
Eric Coates


Listen to this piece at now

The Dam Busters is a perennial British favourite, but that hasn't stopped it from descending a huge 70 places this year

The Dam Busters can now barely be thought of without immediately conjuring up Coates's famous melody, The Dam Busters March. Still a firm favourite military band number at flypasts, the popular theme to the classic British war movie from 1955 is a great example of a piece of music that has become just as famous as the film it comes from. Despite the piece's success, Coates had a profound disliking of composing for film, and in fact his son Austin claimed in a radio interview that The Dam Busters March was not actually written for the film and had in fact been completed a few days before he was contacted by the producers.

Poster for the Associated British Picture Corporation's 1955 film The Dam Busters, which Coates composed the music for.