Edition Peters mourns the passing of Ned Rorem, a great composer and a great wit. Best known for his songs, exceptional in their sensitivity to the poet's art and to the music of American speech, he composed a broad range of choral, instrumental, orchestral, and dramatic works suffused with the same beauty, elegance, and sophistication that characterized his vocal writing.
Born in Richmond, Indiana in 1923, Rorem flourished as a young man in Paris and New York. Soon he would begin publishing diaries that continue to offer valuable glimpses into his life and times: into his milieu among the artists, poets and musicians of the era, into his nimble and observant mind, and—shockingly, in their day—into his experiences as an openly gay man, from his youth in the 1940s through his years of loss in the age of AIDS.
He won many of the highest honors available to an American composer, including the Pulitzer Prize, and his music, published chiefly by Boosey & Hawkes, remains widely performed. Those pieces of his published by Edition Peters, including his Barcarolles and his Sonata No. 1 for piano, are among the highlights of our catalogue.
Ned Rorem passed away in New York, New York at the age of 99.