Erich Kunzel, a staple in the Cincinnati and Indianapolis music scenes, died this morning. He was 74.
In addition to his acclaimed work with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Kunzel was the first Pops Music Director for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. he returned nearly annually to perform here. Most recently in 2007 with "The Magical Music of Disney" and "Hooray for Hollywood."
Simon Crookall, ISO president and CEO, released the following statement: "The musicians, staff and board of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra were deeply saddened by the news of Maestro Erich Kunzel's death. Erich made his first appearance with the ISO in 1977, and as our first-ever Pops Music Director (1982-2002), Erich was instrumental in the successful expansion of the series. Our prayers are with his family, his friends and our colleagues at the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra."
The ISO's Jack Everly will filling in for Kunzel at the Cincinnati Pops season opener next weekend.