I guess this is goodbye, old pal
You've been a perfect friend...
It’s with great sadness that we report the death of our friend and patron Stephen Sondheim. He passed away at the age of 91 early on Friday morning at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut.
His friend and lawyer Richard Pappas announced his passing, which he described as “sudden”. Indeed, only the previous day Mr Sondheim had celebrated Thanksgiving Dinner with some friends locally.
Only an hour after this news was released the BBC News Channel included a five minute tribute which included excerpts of Millicent Martin singing ‘Send in the Clowns’ - “his only hit song”! - along with Adrian Lester in Company and Maria Friedman in the original NT production of Sunday. Also included was a live interview with Sierra Boggess in New York. Undoubtedly the lights on Broadway will be dimmed in his honour.
The BBC called him "a titan of musical theatre who turned the unlikeliest of subjects into entertainment landmarks"; Playbill said his "thematically complex, lyrically nimble, and musically challenging scores changed the face of musical theatre during the latter half of the 20th century"; The New York Times said he "raised and reset the artistic standard for the American stage musical". To us, he was a friend and patron who did so much to encourage and support young performers and writers, as well as providing the soundtrack to so many of our lives.
We’ll endeavour to keep members informed as and when further details become available.
Presumably radio and television will broadcast tribute programmes. Past experience has shown that for people of Mr Sondheim’s stature initially some of these may be slotted into existing schedules with little prior notification. We’ll do our best to keep you informed.
We’ll be producing a special memorial edition of our magazine in which we hope to include tributes from his friends and colleagues as well as an appreciation of his life and career.
Steve biography can be read here.