Year Inducted: 2002
Acclaimed lyricist Sir Tim Rice created a “whole new world” of witty, entertaining, and heartfelt songs for Disney animated features, including Aladdin in 1992 and The Lion King in 1994. In addition, he contributed to Disney theatrical productions, including the Tony® award-winning The Lion King in 1997 and Aida in 1998.
Born in Amersham, England, on November 10, 1944, Tim entered the music scene as the lead singer for a pop group called the Aardvarks in 1961. His first published song, “That’s My Story,” appeared in 1964, the same year he met Andrew Lloyd Webber. The duo crafted pop songs as well as show tunes, including “It’s Easy for You,” which was recorded by Elvis Presley.
Tim was best known at the time for his resounding collaborations with Webber; these included such 1970s musical sensations as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Evita, which was transformed into the 1996 Touchstone feature by the same name, starring Madonna as the Argentine grand dame. The song “You Must Have Loved Me” from the motion picture Evita resulted in an Academy Award® for the duo in 1997.
In the early 1980s, Tim collaborated with ABBA members Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson on Chess. The subsequent 1984 album featured the singles “One Night in Bangkok” and “I Know Him So Well,” which topped charts in America, Europe and Asia, while the 1985 stage production became a smash hit in multiple countries. Other theatrical projects included Tycoon, Starmania, Blondel, and more.
Tim also collaborated with John Barry on the title song “All Time High” for the James Bond movie Octopussy, and with Freddie Mercury for his album with opera diva Montserrat Caballe. Tim’s other distinguished writing mates include Paul McCartney, Cliff Richards, Marvin Hamlisch, and others.
The lyrical wordsmith arrived at Disney in 1991 to work with Alan Menken, writing lyrics for Beauty and the Beast, and later contributed five new songs to the Tony award-winning stage adaptation of that film. He went on to win Oscars® for “A Whole New World,” written with Menken for Aladdin, and “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” written with Elton John for The Lion King. Their collaboration continued with the subsequent stage production of that film, followed by Aida. In 1997, Tim reunited with Menken, writing the book and lyrics for the Broadway concert King David.
Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1994, Sir Tim is also a cricket lover and an accomplished author of such books as The Treasures of Lords, about the famous museum at London’s Lord’s cricket ground.