Carlisle Floyd Obituary – Death: Composer Carlisle Floyd, known as a founding father of American opera has passed away. Composer Carlisle died in Tallahassee, Florida on September 30, 2021. He was 95 years old. No cause of death is given at the time of this report.
I’m absolutely gutted. Our opera community lost two bright stars today: Carlisle Floyd and Miah Im. Holding their loved ones and our musical family in my heart tonight.
— Ursula Kuhar (@Doc_UKu) September 30, 2021
Carlisle Sessions Floyd was born on June 11, 1926 in Latta, South Carolina. Floyd attended Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where he studied piano under Ernst Bacon. He earned his Bachelor of Music at Syracuse University in New York 1946. He was in the piano faculty at Florida State University in Tallahassee. He received a master’s degree at Syracuse in 1949.
While at FSU, Floyd gradually became interested in composition. His third opera was his greatest success: Susannah. Later in 1958, Floyd’s Wuthering Heights (after Emily Brontë) premiered at the Santa Fe Opera, with Curtin as the heroine.
Carlisle Floyd’s libretto for “The Passion of Jonathan Wade”, always seemed deeply personal from him:
“If only we might have lived our lives
In some past or future time
Where a hostile world could not invade
Our peaceful private world.”
I hope it will come home one day for him.
— John Kennedy (@johnkennedySF) September 30, 2021
The Passion of Jonathan Wade was first seen at the City Opera in 1962. Of Mice and Men (after John Steinbeck), following a long gestation, was heard at the Seattle Opera in 1970 in a staging by Corsaro.
I’m saddened to hear the news of Carlisle Floyd’s passing. He was a brilliant composer and I love his music, but I will forever cherish the times he’d call me up at Boosey & Hawkes to talk about how the Syracuse Orange basketball team was doing. A wonderful man.
— Chris Cresswell (@GrizwaldMusic) September 30, 2021
We’re deeply saddened by the loss of beloved American composer Carlisle Floyd.
We were fortunate enough to have Mr. Floyd visit #StPeteOpera during our Season 8 production of in 2014.
— St. Petersburg Opera (@stpeteopera) September 30, 2021