Anthony Morss, in Memoriam
Conductor, Pianist, MCNY President, Vice President, Board Member
Walter Damrosch Award, Koussevitzky Young Artist Awards Jurist
Maestro Anthony Wentworth Morss served on the Musicians Club of New York's Board of Directors from 1975 until his death on August 6, 2018. He was the president of the Club from 2010-2012, a frequent jurist on the Serge & Olga Koussevitzky Young Artist Awards, and the recipient of the first Walter Damrosch Award.
Click on the following image to link to Maestro Morss's August 19, 2018, obituary in The New York Times (https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nytimes/obituary.aspx?page=lifestory&pid=189985814) - it has a guest book to leave your memories:
On May 5, 2018, Maestro Anthony W. Morss became the first recipient of the Musicians Club of New York's Walter Damrosch Award for his lifelong contributions to the world's musical life. It was awarded in absentia because he was in the hospital. At the June 28, 2018, Board of Directors Meeting, Maestro Morss was able to attend and presented the following letter to the Club, first reading it aloud. Fortunately, the meeting was recorded. Click on the video below to hear Maestro Morss address the Board:
In addition to his extraordinary musical career, which traversed the world, he knew and learned from Serge Koussevitzky from an early age, long before his widow, Madame Olga Koussevitzky, became president of the Musicians Club of New York and donated substantial sums towards the foundation of the Club's competitions in her husband's name. Click below for a substantial interview of Maestro Morss on Maestro Kossevitzky:
In 2016, SHARP magazine featured Maestro Morss in its article on setting the pitch for music. Maestro Morss was influenced and intrigued by Verdi and others, who tried to standardize on A432 Hz, instead of what ultimately became the standard A440 Hz:
Anthony Morss's intellect led him beyond music - he was an avid reader of, well, everything, it seemed. There didn't seem to be a signifcant subject that he didn't have facts, theories and views about. All of his searching seemed to reaffirm and strengthen his empathy for others, particularly the poor and the sick and the garden we call earth. He was a religious man and despite an imposing exterior - tall, handsome, authoritative in stature and delivery, the facts on his fingertips - he was humble, a very good listener, and an extraordinary thinker. Here is an example on youtube of Anthony Morss expounding on:
The New York Times obituary, link above, gives an outline of his career, but I would add these two highlights that appear in the Boston Globe obituary, and were a part of Maestro Morss' curriculum vitae as noteworthy milestones:
In 1978, Mr. Morss led a production of the Marseilles Opera with Marton, Aragall and Wixell. At Tully Hall, in 1990, he conducted a concert version of Fidelio with original instruments, the first such performance of standard repertory opera in New York.
The following note was received from the niece of Maestro Morss:
Requests for further additions to this memorial page can be submitted to the Board of Directors through firstname.lastname@example.org.