‘You still got it!’ – 90-year-old John Williams casually plays Brahms concerto during recording session

4 November 2022, 10:54 | Updated: 10 November 2022, 11:02

WATCH: John Williams at 90 | A Classic FM Exclusive

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

A film music legend returns to his pianistic roots, in a moment of magic in the recording studio.

During a scoring session for Steven Spielberg’s new movie The Fabelmans, legendary film composer John Williams sat down at the piano and delighted his colleagues with an unexpected tickle of the ivories.

Williams, who celebrated his 90th birthday this year, eases himself onto the piano stool while coyly saying, “So I wanna see if I can…”.

The next moment, Williams is firing out the second movement from Brahms’ Second Piano Concerto with impressive agility.

The best part is that, if you look closely, the man in the background filming the moment on his phone is none other than Williams’ number one fan: legendary director, Steven Spielberg. At the end of the video, as seen in B-roll clips distributed by Universal Pictures, Spielberg proclaims, “He’s still got it!”.

Read more: Spielberg told John Williams ‘you can’t be serious!’ when he first heard ‘Jaws’ theme

The legendary duo met on a blind lunch date in 1972, and soon started working together after Spielberg approached Williams to compose music for his film The Sugarland Express (1974).

They teamed up the following year for the blockbuster success, Jaws, and have struck gold time almost every time since. Their roster now contains some of the most enduring movies in the history of cinema, including Jurassic Park and Schindler’s List.

Their latest collaboration, The Fabelmans, will be out in UK cinemas on 27 January 2023.

John Williams conducts the Vienna Philharmonic in the 'Imperial March'

Williams cut his teeth as a pianist, joining the US Air Force where he played the piano and arranged music for the band, aged just 19.

After his time in the forces, Williams moved to New York City in 1955 and studied at the prestigious Juilliard School. During this time, he worked as a pianist in jazz clubs and eventually studios, most notably for Henry Mancini, who composed ‘Moon River’.

70 years later, the force is still strong with this one…