Memorial Celebration for Howard Brofsky
Howard Brofsky

On Oct. 17, 2013, Prof. Emeritus Howard Brofsky passed away. He had been struggling with illness for a while, but was teaching up until 10 days prior to his passing, demonstrating a dedication and inner strength that was extraordinary.

Prof. Brofsky joined the Queens College Music Faculty in the late 1960's and served as Chair of the Department early in his career. He was an expert on the Italian Symphony of the 17th and 18th Centuries, co-authored a respected Music Appreciation textbook, and was a lifelong Jazz performer. His love and knowledge of jazz was especially important to the School of Music as Prof. Brofsky was the primary architect of our jazz program. He convinced the administration that a Jazz Program was a worthy goal for a serious School of Music (an opinion not universally shared among academics in the early 1980's). He also brought recognized Jazz Masters Jimmy Heath and Sir Roland Hanna to the full-time faculty, in each case the invitation to the faculty was the first such invitation either of these major Jazz figures was offered.

Howard Brofsky had enormous intellect, talent, generosity and, most importantly, vision. He saw the jazz program before it was there and he had the quiet strength to get the job done and see that it happened in a way that quickly established our program among the best in New York.

He especially loved the classroom. It was a particular pleasure for me to invite him back to the Adjunct Faculty a few years ago, and watch him connect again with the School of Music, and with the current students. He will be sorely missed by the entire Aaron Copland School of Music family.

Please join me, the Brofsky family, the Aaron Copland School of Music and some special guests to celebrate the life and music of Howard Brofsky.

 

Edward Smaldone, Director, Aaron Copland School of Music



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