Obituary: Richard Freed, music critic, broadcaster, program annotator, 93

Posted on: January 5, 2022

“Richard Freed, 93, died at his home in Rockville, MD, on New Year’s Day,” reads an unsigned obituary on Tuesday (1/4) at the Music Critics Association of North America website. “Freed had written and broadcast on music for some sixty years, during which time he served on the music staffs of Saturday Review and The New York Times and reviewed recordings for National Public Radio and radio stations in Chicago and Washington…. He also programmed and annotated a series of recordings for the Smithsonian Institution. He was assistant to the director of the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music in the 1960s, and for 17 years he was executive director of the Music Critics Association of North America…. Following a brief stint as public relations director for the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, he created and hosted a 17-year series of broadcasts of that orchestra, and a shorter one for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He was program annotator for those two orchestras as well as the Philadelphia Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra, the Houston Symphony, and the Flint Symphony Orchestra…. He also annotated about 500 recordings for various labels…. He received two ASCAP/Deems Taylor Awards…. He is survived by his spouse, Louise, of Kensington, MD, and their daughter, Erica, of Los Angeles.”