HomeGaming and ProductsShunsuke Kikuchi, Dragon Ball Music Composer, Dies Aged 89

Shunsuke Kikuchi, Dragon Ball Music Composer, Dies Aged 89


Shunsuke Kikuchi, the prolific Japanese composer who worked on Dragon Ball, Doraemon, and Kamen Rider, has passed away at the age of 89.

According to an Oricon news report, per Kotaku, Kikuchi died on April 24 at a medical facility in Tokyo after suffering from aspiration pneumonia. He is said to have been undergoing medical treatment at the facility prior to his passing. The report also notes that his close family members and relatives organized a private funeral for the late composer.

Over the course of his career, Kikuchi worked on numerous anime productions, movies, and television shows. He first rose to prominence in the 1960s, making his professional debut as a composer in the 1961 film The Eighth Enemy. In the years that followed, he earned worldwide recognition for his contributions to the Dragon Ball franchise.

The Dragon Ball Fandom page notes that, altogether, Kikuchi composed 23 packages of music for the original Dragon Ball show and its sequel Dragon Ball Z, which resulted in over 400 different pieces of music. He also composed the theme for Doraemon, an anime series that ran for 26 years, and he also scored songs for Kamen Rider, Tiger Mask, Dr. Slump, and many more.

Among numerous honors, Kikuchi was nominated for the Japan Academy Prize in 1983 for his work on The Gate of Youth and To Trap a Kidnapper. He went on to receive an Award of Merit at the 2013 Tokyo Anime Awards, and later became the recipient of the prestigious lifetime achievement award at the 57th Japan Record Awards in 2015.


Adele Ankers is a Freelance Entertainment Journalist. You can reach her on Twitter.

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