Stephen Sondheim has died aged 91.
The famed composer and lyricist, who was behind some of the biggest musical theatre productions, passed away on Friday (26.11.21) at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut, his lawyer and friend F. Richard Pappas has confirmed.
The news was first reported by the New York Times, who said Pappas described Sondheim’s death as “sudden”, as he had celebrated Thanksgiving with his friends just one day earlier.
Sondheim’s career spanned more than 60 years, and he was known for co-creating Broadway theatre classics including ‘West Side Story’, ‘Gypsy’, ‘Sweeney Todd’, and ‘Into the Woods’, all of which went on to become hit movies.
The composer had his first big hit with ‘West Side Story’ when he was just 27 years old, and he went on to be praised for having “reinvented the American musical".
On the news of his death, producer Cameron Mackintosh issued a statement to The Guardian which read: “The theatre has lost one of its greatest geniuses and the world has lost one of its greatest and most original writers. Sadly, there is now a giant in the sky. But the brilliance of Stephen Sondheim will still be here as his legendary songs and shows will be performed for evermore. Goodbye old friend and thank you from all of us.”