Stephen Sondheim, one of the giants of Broadway songwriting, died Nov. 26 at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut, according to media reports. He was 91.
Among the works in the legend's oeuvre are Company (1970), Follies (1971), A Little Night Music (1973), Sweeney Todd (1979), Sunday in the Park with George (1984) and Into the Woods (1987).
Sondheim was considered the greatest composer-lyricist of the last half of the 20th century by many. According to Deadline, he was one of the few major theater composers who handled words and music, including such legends as Irving Berlin, Cole Porter and Frank Loesser. His songs include "Send In the Clowns," from A Little Night Music; "Jet Song," from West Side Story; and "Move On," from Sunday in the Park with George.
Sondheim received a 1993 Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime achievement and, in 2015 was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama. In 2008, he was granted a Tony Award for lifetime achievement. In total, he won nine Tony Awards, an Oscar, eight Grammys, a Pulitzer Prize and an Olivier in addition to the presidential honor.
Tributes from celebrities poured in. Anna Kendrick tweeted, "I was just talking to someone a few nights ago about how much fun (and fucking difficult) it is to sing Stephen Sondheim. Performing his work has been among the greatest privileges of my career. A devastating loss."
Barbra Streisand stated, "Thank the Lord that Sondheim lived to be 91 years old so he had the time to write such wonderful music and GREAT lyrics! May he Rest In Peace." Aaron Tveit posted, "Thank you for everything Mr Sondheim. Speechless. We are so lucky to have what you've given the world."
Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda posted, "Future historians: Stephen Sondheim was real. Yes, he wrote Tony & Maria AND Sweeney Todd AND Bobby AND George & Dot AND Fosca AND countless more. Some may theorize Shakespeare's works were by committee but Steve was real & he was here & he laughed SO loud at shows & we loved him."
Sondheim's survivors include husband Jeffrey Romley and half-brother Walter Sondheim.