Kit Hesketh-Harvey dies aged 65, British screenwriter and composer cause of death explained

Kit Hesketh-Harvey
Kit Hesketh-Harvey, British writer & composer


Kit Hesketh-Harvey, a composer, screenwriter, and musician, passed away unexpectedly at age 65. Let’s see, how did the artist die and his cause of death in detail.

How did Kit Hesketh-Harvey die?

The multi-talented performer, who entertained King Charles is no more. Kit died suddenly on February 1, 2023 at the age of 65.

Kit had a long and successful career that included penning the screenplay for the 1987 movie Maurice, directed by James Ivory.

He also starred as a young Hugh Grant in one of his early cinematic performances.

“We are devastated to learn today of the death of a long-term PBJ Management friend and client Kit Hesketh-Harvey,” his agent said in a statement.

“A client for over three decades, Kit was a uniquely talented and erudite performer, writer, composer, wit, singer, actor, all-round entertainer, and above all devoted father. [Agency co-founder Peter Bennett-Jones] originally knew kind, clever Kit at university and toured the UK and US with him in The Comedy of Errors in 1978,” a representative at his agency said.

Who was Kit Hesketh-Harvey?

Hesketh-Harvey was well-known for his work on television shows such as The Vicar of Dibley. He was married to actor Katie Rabett, a founding member of the dance group Hot Gossip. She was a previous girlfriend of Prince Andrew, until their recent, acrimonious divorce.

Early life:

Hesketh-Harvey was raised in Malawi by a Foreign Office family and attended Tonbridge School in Kent after graduating as a senior chorister from Canterbury Cathedral.

He attended Clare College in Cambridge on a choir scholarship, where he also participated in the Footlights theater group, to study English literature.


Kit served as a staff producer for the BBC-TV, Music and Arts Department for six years. He then left that work to concentrate on the script for Merchant Ivory’s Maurice.

He went on to study under Stephen Sondheim while the American musical theater icon was a visiting professor at Oxford University.

Later, he worked on Dawn French’s critically acclaimed BBC comedy series The Vicar of Dibley with Richard Curtis.

He founded the cabaret double-act Kit and The Widow with pianist Richard Sisson, who was also a member of the Footlights, in a collaboration that lasted 30 years before coming to an end in 2012.

Kit Hesketh-Harvey cause of death:

According to his agency, he passed away suddenly and peacefully while listening to Radio 3 and getting ready for a Kit & McConnel broadcast.

He was Sarah Sands’ brother, a journalist, and former Evening Standard editor. His passing comes as a double blow to the family as they continue to look for Ms. Sands’s ex-husband, British actor Julian Sands, who vanished while hiking in southern California two weeks ago.

Sarah said, “Kit was dazzling – clever, original, funny, kind. The last time I saw him, he was busy mapping out pilgrim routes across Norfolk; there was always the next adventure, the next joke. He gave and gave and gave.”

Armonico Consort shared the statement on Kit’s passing and that reads,

“We are so saddened to hear of the sudden death of Kit Hesketh Harvey, the genius who was behind our opera librettos from Mozart’s ‘Magic Flute’, to the insane ‘Monteverdi’s Flying Circus’. He was a joy to work with, so generous with his time and massively inspiring to us as a young company. Thank you Kit for all you gave and all you kept giving.”

Tributes to Kit Hesketh-Harvey:

Edward Simpson posted,

Rest in Peace Kit Hesketh-Harvey. An extraordinary man. He will be missed.

Phil Wright posted,

Very sad to hear of the passing of Kit Hesketh-Harvey. Taken from us far too early. I have some wonderful memories of being hardly able to see straight mixing Kit and the Widow in the 90s. RIP.

Issy van Randwyck tweeted,

So very, very sad to hear the news about dear Kit – Kit Hesketh-Harvey death: Writer for Vicar of Dibley and Maurice dies aged 65.

Crazy Coqs tweeted,

We’re deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Kit Hesketh-Harvey. A veteran of Radio 4’s ‘Just A Minute’ and one of our most regular acts at Crazy Coqs as one half of @kitandmcconnel since we first opened. Our condolences go out to his family and friends during this time.

Jennifer Johnston posted,

So very sorry to hear of the premature death of Kit Hesketh Harvey, a multi-talented, clever raconteur and gent, who presented some galas I sang in a few years ago (pictured here with me and the lovely Tim West). My condolences to his family and loved ones. Rest in peace, Kit.


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