It is with great sadness that we report American composer Steven Stucky died of brain cancer in Ithaca, New York on February 14, 2016. A major mentor to and advocate for generations of American composers, Stucky served on the composition faculty of The Juilliard School, was Emeritus Professor of Composition at Cornell University, and Vice Chair on the Board of Directors of New Music USA. Stucky served as Chair of the board of the American Music Center from 2008 until its merger with Meet The Composer to become New Music USA in November 2011. His dedication and wisdom were central guiding factors in making our merger a success.
Additional obituaries have already appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times, the hometown paper of a city where Stucky played an extremely important role in the new music scene. (In 1988, Stucky was appointed composer-in-residence of the Los Angeles Philharmonic through the Meet The Composer Orchestra Residencies Program and remained closely involved with the orchestra for more than two decades.)
Over the years, he wrote several articles for us on NewMusicBox. In 2005, we asked him for a response to his being awarded the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Music. And in 2009, he was one of eight people we approached to share their prognostications about the future of music, for which he contributed a provocative essay entitled for The End of History. Finally, in 2010, he wrote a memorial essay in tribute to the composer Robert Moffat Palmer.
NewMusicBox will publish a memorial essay in tribute to Steven Stucky in the coming weeks.