French composer Francis Lai, who won an Oscar for “Love Story” and penned the beguiling theme for “A Man and a Woman,” has died at the age of 86, Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi said.
“It is with great sadness that I learn of the death of Francis Lai, this great composer from Nice. “I will soon propose to his family to give his name to an emblematic place of our city," Estrosi wrote on his Twitter page.
Lai was born in Nice, played accordion and piano, and while he was still in his 20s, settled in Paris’s Montmartre district. He soon became accompanist to the legendary chanteuse Edith Piaf. He began writing songs for her as well, and his total song output is now said to exceed 600, Variety reported.