February 5, 2018

Alan Stout (1932-2018)

Alan Stout

Professor emeritus Alan Stout, a distinguished member of the Bienen School’s composition faculty for nearly 40 years, died February 1, 2018, at the age of 85.

Born November 26, 1932, in Baltimore, Maryland, Stout was considered one of the most productive composers of his generation. He received his musical training at the Peabody Institute from 1950 to 1954 and completed formal studies in composition and Swedish at the University of Washington in 1959.

A year at the University of Copenhagen in 1954 instilled a deep interest in the music and literature of Scandinavia, whose culture exerted a strong influence on his music. Stout’s principal teachers were Henry Cowell, Wallingford Riegger, Vagn Holmboe, and John Verrall.

Stout joined the Northwestern School of Music faculty in 1963. The recipient of many major commissions, he was active in the Chicago area as a scholar, pianist, and conductor. He wrote for such publications as Nordisk Musikkultur; Beyond the Square, and Music and Musicians. He was also active in editing and translating works of Scandinavian composers and promoting performances of neglected 20th-century American masters and young European composers.

"His courses really brought you to the core of musical structure and all the interesting stories about various works, composers, and performances," said Kurt Hansen (G83), an alumnus and current member of the Bienen School voice and opera faculty.  

Read tributes to Professor Stout from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Tribune online.