Jerry Bock, the composer of the score for shows like Fiddler on the Roof, Fiorello! and She Loves Me, died Nov. 3. He was 81. Fresh Air remembers the composer with highlights from a 2004 interview conducted with Bock and his writing partner, lyricist Sheldon Harnick.
Screenwriter and playwright Horton Foote's career in theater, film and television spanned more than 60 years and included two Academy Awards and a Pulitzer Prize. Foote died on March 4, 2009 after a brief illness. He was 92.
She was a home-grown phenomenon, an operatic soprano trained entirely in the U.S. in an era when most singers developed their craft in Europe, and she made a notable second career after her retirement as a formidable arts administrator and advocate. Fresh Air spoke with her in 1985.
We rebroadcast an interview with late mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt. She had been called the "reigning Handel diva of our day." She appeared in Peter Sellars' productions of Handel and Mozart. This interview originally aired on April 8, 1996.
New York cabaret legend Bobby Short died Monday of leukemia at age 80. The singer performed at New York's Carlyle Hotel for nearly four decades. Short was born in Danville, Ill., and began his career at age 9, known as "The Miniature King of Swing." He was named a Living Landmark by New York's Landmark Conservancy and a National Living Legend by the Library of Congress.
On March 7, the actor and monologist Spalding Gray was found dead in the East River in New York. Gray, 62, had been missing for two months. His family believes he committed suicide. Gray was best known for his autobiographical monologues, including Swimming to Cambodia, Monster in a Box and It's a Slippery Slope. Over the last 19 years he was a frequent guest on Fresh Air. We listen back to excerpts of his performances and interviews: Swimming to Cambodia (rebroadcast from Aug. 20, 1985), Monster in a Box (rebroadcast from Sept.
Soprano Eileen Farrell has died at the age of 82. Well listen back to a 1992 interview. Her career began in radio, with her own show on CBS, in the 1940s. In the fifties she started singing opera, and performed with every major opera company and symphony orchestra in the US, including five seasons with the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Starting in the sixties, she began putting out albums of jazz standards. Her 1999 autobiography is entitled, Cant Help Singing. She was also a professor of music at Indiana University and the University of Maine.
We remember actor Jason Robards. He died yesterday at the age of 78, after a long battle with cancer. He was an actor for over 50 years. He won Oscars for his performances as Ben Bradlee in "All the President's Men," and Dashiell Hammett in "Julia." In 1956 Robards first came to the attention of the critics with his performance in Eugene O'Neill's "The Iceman Cometh." His performance helped define the role for a generation. It also began Robards collaboration with director Jose Quintero, resurrecting the works of O'Neill.
We remember actor Werner Klemperer, who played Colonel Klink on the T-V show Hogan’s Heroes. He died on December 7th at the age of 80. He was the son of the conductor Otto Klemperer. He started his career in theater, and moved on to Hollywood. He won two Emmys during his 6 year stint as Klink (he was nominated all six years). In 1987 he returned to Broadway to play a Jewish shopkeeper in a revival of Cabaret. His work earned him a Tony nomination. (5/25/87)