What is Taboo’s theme song?

All you need to know about the haunting music of the Tom Hardy drama


BBC1 period drama Taboo opens with an unusually haunting theme song, introducing the torrid world of Tom Hardy’s James Delaney in perfectly creepy fashion.


The theme is called Taboo, and was written by composer Max Richter who also wrote the score (background music) for the entire series.

And if you came away thinking it sounded like a creepy invocation of childhood, that was intentional – according to production staff the theme was supposed to sound a bit like a lullaby with a darker edge.

And if you’re ALSO thinking that the theme sounds a bit different from week to week, you have a good ear – in episode 1 the theme music was played on an instrument called a celeste, which resembles a piano but makes a sound more like glockenspiel (albeit with a slightly softer noise).


However, future weeks used a string arrangement instead, with the childlike celeste version only returning for the finale. They saved the best ’til last, we suppose.