Lucy Simon Death: Tony-nominated Composer Dies at 82
Lucy Simon, famed for her musicals Doctor Zhivago (2011) and The Secret Garden (1991), passed away at her home in Piedmont, New York on Thursday at the age of 82.
Lucy Simon Passed Away at the Age of 82
Lucy Simon, the sister of Carly Simon who performed with the pop icon as the Simon Sisters, has away after a long battle with breast cancer, according to a family spokesperson's release. The two began their careers in Massachusetts, and their performances in Greenwich Village nightclubs were well received by the Tarriers.
While Carley was achieving success with her songs “You're So Vain,” “Anticipation,” and ” Haven't Got Time for the Pain,” Simon attended nursing school and eventually married a Psychiatrist.
Simon recorded two songs for RCA, “Stolen Time” (1977) and “Lucy Simon,” shortly thereafter (1975). Then, Simon and her husband Levine produced two Grammy-winning children's albums, “In Harmony” (1981) and “In Harmony 2.” (1983).
Lucy Simon was dubbed the uncommon female composer of her day to have a Broadway show going. The show was running smoothly when The Secret Garden premiered in 1991. The musical based on the beloved children's tale by Frances Hodgson Burnett and starring Daisy Eagan, Mandy Patinkin, Alison Fraser, and Rebecca Luker, which won two Tony Awards, was a worldwide success.
The lyricist for the book “The Secret Gardener,” Marsha Norman, and the book's producer, Heidi Landesman, selected Simon as their official composer after being charmed by a demo melody she wrote for “I Heard Someone Crying.”
Doctor Zhivago, her next musical, eventually opened on Broadway in March 2015 after nearly two decades of gestation in Australia. Later, Simon disclosed that her inspiration for the musical came from Boris Pasternak's Zhivago poems near the conclusion of his remarkable 1957 novel.
She stated at the time, “Those poems were my entry point into music and the idea for telling that experience in my song.”
Simon collaborated with Emily Menn and Birkenhead on the musical adaptation of the 2015 novel Our Souls at Night, directed by Victoria Clark. However, her illness prevented her from continuing with the endeavor.
In 2018, Simon was awarded the Samuel French Award for Continual Excellence in American Theatre.
Simon was born on 5 May 1940 to Richard Simon, a publishing mogul, and Andrea Simon, a former switchboard operator at “Simon & Schuster.” The second of their four children, Lucy Simon was the second of their offspring. Joanna, Peter, and Carly are three cherished siblings of hers. Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein, Benny Goodman, and James Thurber were prominently promoted in the home where the children grew up.
When Simon was 14 years old, a school assignment required her to memorize a poem; this prompted her to compose music for the poem “Wynken Blynken & Nod” by Eugene Field. In 1964, this track reached No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Simon acquired the rights to compose musicals for the popular children's book “Little House on the Prairie” during her early career. With this in mind, Simon began collaborating with songwriter Susan Birkenhead, but the idea was ultimately abandoned.
“That book failed, but I learned how to write for the stage. So when invited to compose music for The Secret Garden, she was prepared.
Lucy Simon is survived by her husband, Levine, her children Julie and James, and her grandchildren Ben, Evie, Charlie, and Sophie, in addition to her popular sister. She previously stated, “I think that life and art will continue into the future.” “The melody frequently leads me home. It guides me to my final destination. It is my religion as though the gods themselves were speaking to me.”