Richard Anshutz Prize
A full tuition scholarship is awarded at the Gala Concert to honor one of our participants for “high quality musicianship, outstanding attitude and encouragement of others, emulating the life in music of Richard Anshutz,” one of the first chamber music coaches for CMIsc and our faithful volunteer “Operations Manager.”
2021 Winner: Kaylee Maeng
Congratulations to Hannah Velez and Jared Weissberg, winners of the Richard Anshutz Memorial Scholarship for 2019
Richard Leland Anshutz 1930-2013
Richard Leland Anshutz, 82, of Cerritos, California, died of heart failure on June 22, 2013. He suffered a heart attack on June 14 and successfully underwent emergency triple bypass surgery on June 16, but just didn’t have the strength to recover. The official cause of death was coronary artery disease. One of the first faculty members of CMIsc, he was always eager to help and brighten our efforts at every coaching session, as well as volunteering to serve as our operations coordinator.
His education included graduation from Central High School, Sioux City; Richmond Professional Institute of the College of William and Mary in Richmond, VA 1950; Morningside College, Sioux City (degree in Music Education,1957); Indiana University, masters degree studies in music; University of South Dakota, Vermillion (Master of Music in Music Education Degree, 1968); and the University of California, Santa Barbara, PhD studies (ABD) in Historical Musicology.
He served in the U.S. Air Force 1950-1954. His long and distinguished musical life included conducting orchestras and bands, playing the timpani, serving as orchestra librarian and/or personnel manager in professional orchestras and municipal bands in Virginia, Iowa, Wyoming, Ohio, Tennessee and California. A staff member of the American Symphony Orchestra League in Charleston, WV, 1957-1959, he returned to his own high school to become the Orchestra Director at Central High School, Sioux City, IA 1959-1967, as well as the Conductor of the Sioux City Youth Symphony. A mentor to many young men through teaching music and his volunteer work in DeMolay, he is remembered with deep gratitude and love for his kind and humble demeanor, his interest and friendship extended to all he knew. Everyone loved to hear his stories.
Highlights of his career included 1969-1977 in Santa Barbara, where he was a teaching assistant to Karl Geiringer and Peter Fricker at the University of California. As a graduate student in Historical Musicology, he completed all course work, written and oral exams for Ph.D. (ABD), and was the Conductor of the Santa Barbara Youth Symphony. During the summers he was the Operations Coordinator at the Music Academy of the West.
Although they dated in 1962, he did not “pop the question” in time, and waited 27 years until he again found the love of his life, Kay Pech, at a music convention. They were married in Vienna, Austria, on June 7, 1989, sharing 24 years of a “musical match made in heaven.” He was devoted to her and enjoyed their collaboration on many musical projects, particularly the Chamber Music Institute—Southern California, a nonprofit providing string quartet coaching for players of all ages, and served as CMI’s volunteer operations coordinator.
He wrote reviews of musical performances for the Sioux City Journal in the 1960s, was the manager of a Kinko’s store in Long Beach in the 1990s, and Membership Chair and Editor of the American String Teachers Association state newsletter, The Soundpost, 2000-2013, winning the “Best State Chapter Newsletter” national award from ASTA in 2012. He loved traveling and his favorite place in the world was Paris.
He is survived by his wife Kay Pech, two step-sons, Jon Andreas of Cerritos, California, and Marc Andreas of Grandville, Michigan, and seven grandchildren, Adeline, Connor, Lovely, Galadriel, Jonah, Ivy and Willow.
Per his wishes, no memorial service is planned. His body has been cremated and was interred in Sioux City, Iowa, next to his parents’ graves. In lieu of flowers, tax-deductible contributions may be given to CMIsc for the Richard Anshutz Memorial Scholarship
Tributes in response to news of Richard Anshutz’s passing
…from Jon Andreas: My stepdad, Richard Anshutz, died this morning, age 82. I have been blessed to know several people in my life who embody Unconditional Love in the fullest sense; Richard was one of them. I treated him coldly at first, a quarter century ago, when he reentered my mom’s life. He had been carrying a torch for her for the previous quarter century, never marrying, devoting his life to sharing classical music with people young and old around the world. I’ve never met a person with a more encyclopedic memory for names, faces, places, and musical trivia. Everyone who met him loved him. He eventually won me over too. I could tell he was good for my mom right away. He just loved me. Nothing, it seems, would stop him from loving me, encouraging me, being proud of me, telling me funny stories, exploring my intellectual interests with me, or visiting me often—until his body gave out. His religion, if you could call it that, was subtle, full of Mystery, the love of Life and humanity, and best expressed through music. If all of his friends from all over the globe could gather to say goodbye to him, I’m sure they would fill a cathedral—and form a full symphony orchestra! Oh, what I would give to play the cello in that requiem! Goodbye Papa Richard. You were the best husband my mother could’ve ever had—and an incredible father. You will never be forgotten. (Written to Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture.)
…from Anne Cowley: Dick was my string teacher from 4th grade through my junior year in high school. I remember when he came over to visit me the summer before my senior year to tell me that he had taken a job in Cedar Rapids and would not be my teacher for my final year of high school. I was so mad at him for deserting me like that. I realize now that it was a career move for him but I was devastated to be deserted like that. The man who replaced him was not of Dick’s quality. When I began teaching, I remembered all the little things that Dick did to make him such a wonderful teacher and I tried to emulate that with my students. I treasured each return trip he made to Sioux City as we had a chance to reconnect. I also enjoyed all his many Christmas letters and emails. He was a great influence in my life and I miss him so much. He went way too soon. I cannot believe he is gone! Way too soon!
…from grandson Connor Andreas: Papa Richard, I love you and will miss you so much when I come out to visit. To let you know, I am 5’6″ and maybe finally taller than you. This is really hard for me and I hope that someone can read this message sometime. I gave you that name, Papa Richard, and that is who you’ll be forever and ever in my heart. In my Washington, D.C. trip I saw the tomb of the unknown soldier and I remembered how much you loved to talk to me about it and French history. Now that you are with Jesus, I pray that I can help pass on your legacy with my grandchildren, because its such a powerful thing now. I will see you soon enough with our lord Jesus Christ.
…from Tyrone Greive: Dick Anshutz was the Sioux City Central High School Orchestra Director for my last two years there (1959-1961) and was also an esteemed fellow musician and friend. It would take much time and space to mention his many kindnesses that he showed me, but his driving me, along with other students to Morningside College Orchestra rehearsals and to Omaha Symphony concerts are just two examples. When he was given a recent national award by ASTA, we were not only very happy for him but also very proud because he represented the best of a wonderful group of musicians with whom we were privileged to have had as role models. Dick’s energetic love and promotion of music touched me and many others.
…from Tracy Athan: I never got to thank Richard for all the hours of genealogy research that he has completed for our family. Words can’t express how sorry I am for your loss.
…from John Harris: Richard’s memory will be long lasting!
…from Sharon & Richard Haskell: “What we once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose for all that we love deeply become a part of us.” ~Helen Keller …May the love and memories you hold in your heart always sustain you and bring you comfort…that’s what I’m doing. Peace and Love dear ‘sister’ and friend.
…from DeDe Johnson: I was very sad to hear of my cousin’s death. He will be missed.
…from Tom Canfield: Morningside Conservatory of Music produced many fine musicians, educators and leaders of people. Dick was one the Best! I am proud to call him my friend. He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
…from Dave Gross: The news of Dick’s death was sad in deed. He will be missed by the entire family. He was certainly an inspiration to all of us in our early musical education and we often used him and you as grand examples of how music can serve us for an entire lifetime.
…from Bob Wigness: I have such fond memories of Dick around Morningside, the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra and Phi Mu Alpha. My heartfelt sympathy to you.
…from Mabel and Jerry Huldeen: We were praying for his successful surgery after Zean and Kay let the ConAlums know. We were all richer for having known him, in our knowledge of music and his thoughtfulness for his friends from M’side.
…from Kyle Champion: He was such a warm and caring person, passionate about music and students. His wise words were such a help to me, personally, in my involvement in the ASTA board. He will be missed beyond words. My best thoughts are with you at this difficult time. May you have strength for this journey.
…from Gary Fridley: It was very nice to have a conversation with you earlier this evening and celebrate the life of my good friend Dick and your faithful husband Richard. Keep me in mind when you come to Sioux City as we talked and Richard has his final resting place. I would be honored to say a few words to our Maker about Richard and his love for us all. The Sioux City Symphony will play for the second year in a row an outdoor concert at Morningside College in the Outdoor Performance Center this Saturday evening at 8:15 p.m. A few of us will keep Richard in mind during the concert. He will be there in spirit for us.
…from Brian Head: I’m so very sorry to hear this. My thoughts and prayers are with you. With much appreciation for everything that Richard did, Brian.
…from Donna Hale: He was a wonderful man and a special part of ASTA.
…from Ann Miller: Richard contributed so much to ASTA, and I always enjoyed seeing him at the state meetings. His dedication to the organization was inspiring.
…from The Sacramento ASTA Board: Richard’s contributions to ASTA were monumental. As a person, he was a man of grace and intelligence and will be sorely missed.
…from Tom Tatton: We will all miss Richard. He enjoyed a wonderful presence!
…from Peter Park: I am saddened to hear this troubling news. I will always remember Richard as a kind gentleman, and a fine connoisseur of quality music. Please accept my deepest condolences, and know that you are in my thoughts during this difficult time.
…from Lynne Blinco Earle: I was one of two or three flautists in his Central High School Orchestra 1962-1964. None of us would ever forget the concert that we performed and didn’t cancel on the night of the day of JFK’s assassination. It was a very sad concert. He was very special.
…from Tami O’Brien: Richard was always very kind to me, and he was obviously dedicated to ASTA. I can’t imagine losing my husband. You’re in my thoughts and prayers.
…from Joni Swenson: Richard will be sorely missed by string music educators in our state. He gave so much to all of us. I hope you are doing ok and you are in my thoughts.
…from Lynnie Sharzer: Richard was one of the most wonderful people I have ever known. He always had a story to share, a piece of advice and words of wisdom; he filled every room he entered with so much joy. He passed on his love of and expertise in music and made me want to be a better musician. I’ll always remember his twinkling eyes, his frequent chuckle and the way he would keep us on our toes during chamber music rehearsals. I feel so lucky to have had him in my life.
…from Sofia Fojas: please accept my condolences in his passing. He was a huge part of ASTA and he will be sincerely missed.
…from Cynthia Greer: I thought Richard was always so kind to me, and he thought the world of you! So do I, hope this donation helps.
…from Bonnie Lockrem for CalASTA: We are grateful for all the years Richard dedicated to ASTA and string education.
…from Board and Staff of the Sioux City Symphony: Wishing you all the comfort that good memories and caring people can give you.
…from Sherry Pech: he seemed to be your soul mate and friend. Your love of music linked you together in a very special way. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
…from Janice & Phil Luna: Some men leave their mark on the world by the way they live and the difference they make in the lives they touch.
…from Gail Gerding Mellert: Hope you will be comforted by the many beautiful memories you had with him.
…from Gerry & Diane Ambroson: I knew Dick before starting at Central High School thanks to Don and the Youth Symphony. I listen to a lot of classical music on our local public radio station. Many times I hum along or try to whistle. Those around ask how I know the pieces since they know I’m not playing in any orchestra. I proudly tell them of my experiences in Youth Orchestra and at CHS with Dick and all the music we played. I’ve always been grateful for that. If I’m half as successful at passing along things positive such as Dick did, I would consider myself successful.
…from Kerm & Sondra Peters: We were stunned to hear of Richard’s death this morning. My last message to him was to be hopeful and encouraging, since many of us have had the same heart problem. His heart attack must have been quite severe to result in this conclusion. As you know, we have been friends for many years. I think it may have been approaching 60 years, since we first attended the American Symphony Orchestra League workshop at Asilomar, and later the workshops in Sewanee.
We will all miss his frequent communications by e-mail and yearly birthday greetings. His excellent work as Editor of the ASTA publication Soundpost will certainly be missed by string teachers in California. You have both become a vital part of string teaching in that state.
…from Prof. Dr. Ingolf Lamprecht: When I yesterday received your information, I was deeply shocked and very sad. Although we had only a few contacts in the last years, Dick was for me a fixpoint in the USA dating back to 1957 when I first came to the states with the Madrigal Choir of Munster. I had read—before the trip to the USA—Mead’s book about Amerika and the Americans and learnt that one of the first questions to visitors were “How do you like Amerika?” When we arrived with our special plane in New York I was the first to step down the gangway (somehow an administration person) and saw a very attractive, interesting gentleman standing at the ground. Before making my last step he asked “How do you like Ameria?” and my answer was “When I am allowed to do the last step I can answer your question.” It was Dick, the first American I met in your country, and four beautiful, exciting and overwhelming weeks followed. This memory remained.
I had skyped with Dick several times in the last years, with video, and I knew how he was looking now, but I kept a faint idea how he was as a young man. I went up to our roof, found the old album of our tour through the US and found pictures of Dick which confirmed me: a very attractive, interesting, charming young man (showing him together with Herma Kramm and with the Kurator of the University of Münster, Baron Freiherr von Fürstenberg). I scanned those old pictures and send them to you, renewed by a photoshop system. Please recieve them with all my sympathy for you and your – his – family and friends. My thoughts and memories are with you, and I am happy indeed that I was allowed to meet Dick in my life.
…from Way-Chung Wong: Kay, so sorry to hear this! It was nice to see him at Disney Hall a couple of weeks ago.
…from David Young: I am very sorry to hear this. Richard was always very kind and supportive of me
…from Wendy Velasco: What a loss for the music community.
…from Jan Primmer Gassman: I will always have so many good memories of Dick from so many years ago. He and Clark are now playing in the Lord’s orchestra.
…from Alan Mautner: My most sincere condolences to you on Richard’s passing. I’m saddened by this news but happy to have known him. I truly wish you strength during this most difficult time. Blessings to you!
…from Joyce Osborn: RIP Richard. Join in the heavenly orchestra. You have many friends there.
…from Fung Ho: Richard had done so much for ASTA and for the music community of Southern California, he will be missed.
…from Kate Edwards: it was a privilege to know Richard, he’ll be missed!
…from Nathan Huang: Richard brought so much history and life to the music I played with you with his vast music knowledge. He will be deeply missed.
…from Margaret Klemm: So very sorry to hear of your loss. We all felt he was recovering, so this is a shock. Richard will be with you daily in spirit and in your thoughts and in the life long memories you made together. Life can be cruel. Yes, FB can seem superficial, but it is also a tool to get the message out and to receive comfort!!
…from Matt Koutroulis: I fondly remember the times Richard joined us at the Saddleback Chamber Players as a conductor and timpanist. He was a very gifted and classy gentleman.
…from Jane Miller: I am so glad that I got to spend time with you and Richard not so long ago. I know you will miss him dearly and your good memories will always keep him close in your heart. Prayers go out to you and the family in the days to come. It is so hard to find that you and Karen have both lost your husbands so close in time. Blessings to you all.
…from Karen Pech: Richard’s life impacted many as can be read in the messages above but no one will miss him as much as my sister, Kay. May your music and the influence you have on others in the music world help to fill the missing notes in your own life. Your loving sister, Karen
…from Russ and Georgia Klay: We have lost a good friend, one who will not be easily replaced. Dick had such a love for music and such a joy in bringing it to the world. We loved his sense of humor, his positive approach to things and his enjoyment of the beautiful things of the world. Our thoughts go to Kay and to his family. We will miss him….he was “one of a kind.”
…from Kimberly Cole Feeney: Richard was passionate, enthusiastic, dedicated, hardworking and committed to a cause greater than himself. He will be greatly missed.
…from Bill DeJong: 59 years ago Dick became a friend and has been a wonderful colleague and friend ever since. I cannot begin to delve into detail concerning our relationships over the years. I was a sophomore in college when he joined our class. Although there were many memorable occasions, I will just mention a couple of them here. We soon learned that Dick had a special little box, very similar to my mother’s recipe box, which contained the names and addresses and many phone numbers of perhaps hundreds of his friends and relatives. To those of us who were naïve and still not 20 years of age, this was a rather fascinating hobby which he had begun some years before he was even in the Air Force. That little recipe box of names and addresses, probably a precursor to the Rolodex of a few years later, ultimately became a wonderful list and reference for those of us who knew him at Morningside, as he ultimately transferred all of the information on to the Internet. Even as recently as this spring when I lost all of my e-mails, including many from Dick, he sent me the wonderful list of friends from Morningside and the music profession.
Several years after graduating from Morningside, I was a band director in the US Army. In December of 1964 I attended the Midwest band clinic in Chicago. I had been pretty much out of touch with most of my friends and was delighted when I quite by chance ran into Dick at that convention. We had dinner together, and I even remember that it was at Tad’s Steakhouse. Naturally, we maintained contact with each other ever since.
The last time I saw Dick was when we had a 50th year reunion for the seven of us from the class of 1957. All of us were ambulatory and in good spirits, and spent a couple of days and evenings together in Sioux City reminiscing and updating each other with our life’s events. The seven to whom I refer were all music education graduates in 1957, and although we had gone in different directions, it was wonderful being able to hear Dick speak of his activities and life with you and in music.
As I am sure you have heard from others from Morningside, he was, as one of our colleagues put it, “the glue that held us together” all of these years. Many of us have not had the pleasure of meeting you in person, but we certainly have heard wonderful comments about you from your late husband. To say that he will be missed is a gross understatement. You are in our thoughts and prayers in this time of grief.
…from Marilyn George: I am so sorry to hear this news.
What a wonderful husband, friend…
And encourager you have
Had in Richard all these years.
I will write you when I get home
May God give you his love each day.
…from Edwin Lanctot: I first met Richard in the Air Force in 1952 and lived in the room right next door to him for 2 years. Although I loved music and didn’t have any talent, he guided me through some of the most interesting music I’ve ever known and taught me an appreciation I’m sure I would never have gained otherwise. He gave me the score to Beethoven’s ninth and by the time he was finished with me, I could follow each instrument though the entire score. He had an LP with Arturo Toscanini with the NBC Symphony which I think I practically wore out. He was a good friend, and although I only saw him twice more, I never forgot him and can only imagine the good he did for music throughout his life. You will never be forgotten, Richard.
…from Jayne Burnight: Richard and I, Jayne Marie Soiseth, Barnes, Burnight, had some good times as we drove to University of South Dakota in the early 60’s. We were anxious to receive more musical ideas to get our Masters Degree. He always had so many interesting and fun experiences to tell about. Everyone will miss him! He always had such great musical ideas to reveal. Thank you, Richard! God be with you Kay!
…from Muriel Owen: Reading all the wonderful tributes to Richard’s life and influence in others makes me realize how important it is to share what their gift of time and talent means to us while they are living. I know this is so appreciated by my sister Kay. I just want to take the time to thank each person who took time to share what Richard’s gifts meant to them and to remind myself to take time to thank those who mean a lot to me.
…from Parker Foley: Richard took me under his wing in 1963, as I entered Sioux City Central, with just a year of bass study with John Harris and little experience with classical music. Over the next three years, Richard not only exposed me to serious orchestral music through the school symphony, but also provided me with opportunities with Youth Symphony, the Morningside College Chamber Orchestra, and the Sioux City Symphony my senior year. Fifty years later I am still an active amateur string bass player. Richard Anshutz was the single greatest influence of my lifelong love of and participation in music. I celebrate his long, happy, and influential life. He made a difference.
…from Mark Ellis, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Music, Ohio State University: I am so sorry for your tremendous loss. The photo and obituary were wonderful and comforting. My mother (92, in Sioux City) called to talk about the obituary and about Dick last night. I am a Central graduate (1969) and of course Dick was a wonderful mentor for a group of us back then. Of the many things I gained from being in the company of Dick Anshutz, nothing was more important than learning that it was perfectly OK to be over-the-top passionate about music.
And I am remembering that white Chevrolet convertible. Oh, my.
I wish you peace.
…from Glen Cahill: Thank you for your note, but sad news it was. Dick and I go back to the Air Force days which makes for a long friendship. My insight into the world of music is limited, but I always enjoyed his detailed and complete descriptions of his various concerts and experiences. I’ll always remember our times at Aspen and how much he enjoyed every minute of the trip. A friend lost is never easy, but Dick will always be a part of my life and will always be remembered.
…from Patricia Aiken: I have many fond memories of Richard while we were students together at UCSB. A wonderful man and musician!! RIP Richard.
…from Karen Clark Porter: What a wonderful man Richard was and I was privileged to have played in the youth band that he conducted in Roseville in the early 80’s. He had such a passion for music and performing and I learned a lot from him. RIP my kind friend! You will be missed by so many.
…from Dieter Wulfhorst (Fresno ASTA): He will be remembered for his passion for music and music education, his wit, and compassion. He touched the lives of countless music students. His legacy will live forever in the work he did as musician and music educator, especially for ASTA.
…from Jack Wolff: Dick was my best friend. We met 73 years ago standing near our chairs at our first time to play as violinists in the All City Student Orchestra. Dick was bubbling over with enthusiasm. I will never forget it. He warmed up by playing some parts of different passages from the standard repertoire. He played them with such passion and love of music that it was just a whole new thing to watch and listen to him. Music, not sweat, came from his pores. I slid into my chair and Dick followed very quickly as Doug Reader, our conductor, was ready to go. I don’t think either of us realized then that we were going to be life-long friends. When Dick left us, he made a large excision in my life.
…from David Bircher: Both Carol and I were saddened by the passing of Dick. He always seemed indestructible. I would like to let you know how special Dick was to me during those exciting times at Morningside College. It was, of course, the link provided by the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra that allowed Dick’s wonderful generosity and seemingly limitless knowledge to be funneled my way. Under his tutelage as assistant librarian of the SCSO I was initiated into the nuts and bolts of making an orchestral concert series work. In Dick’s presence this work was never arduous as time was constantly filled with anecdotes about musical performance technique, tradition, savoir faire, etc. He shared freely in so many ways. Dick was certainly a modèle d’excellence to follow.
His crowning contribution to me personally was the work he did to arrange my access to the summer training sessions in the ASOL conductor workshops in the late fifities. Of course we were all his students and the thing he wanted most was for us all to succeed. His success as a pedagogue at all levels was fueled by unselfish energy and above all with patience. Dick gave to me and many others the sense that we were worth the effort and that what we were doing as musicians was precious. He was a major influence in my musical formation and a person I’ll never forget.
…from Stephanie Chiao, Past President Stockton Section of ASTA: He was a wonderful person and will be greatly missed. I feel privileged to have been able to know and work with him during his time on the ASTA board, and to have been a small part of his very full life.
…from Parker Foley: Richard took me under his wing in 1963, as I entered Sioux City Central HS, with just a year of bass study with John Harris and little experience with classical music. Over the next three years, he not only exposed me to serious orchestral music through the school symphony, but also provided me with opportunities with the Youth Symphony, the Morningside College Chamber Orchestra, and the Sioux City Symphony, my senior year. Fifty years later I am still an active amateur string bass player. Richard Anshutz was the single greatest influence of my lifelong love of and participation in music. He was also a mentor on life. I enclose a memorial gift to help continue the work he started with the Institute.
…from Deanna Cheung: We will all miss Richard, but no one will miss him as you do. He is still here in our memories—full of love and stories, and as generous and selfless as any human being could be. I am often reminded of his enthusiasm and joy, unexpectedly, when listening to or talking about music—that ineffable thing which binds us together across space and time.
…from Linda Rose: I always enjoyed speaking to Richard whenever the occasion arose, both on the phone and with you. It was great to read his bio and hear his story and your story together.
…from Allan Carter: Richard will be missed. I remember him well for the time I knew him. His knowledge, his welcoming smile and wonderful personality. Sent with great respect.
…from Jacquie Lyman: I’m glad I can donate something to the Chamber Music Institute, which meant so much to Richard. It is a privilege and a joy to remember him with this loving gift and to honor him. Jon’s tribute and all tributes I read were so meaningful.
…from Ralph Alberstrom: I will always remember Richard as a kind and caring gentleman who had a great sense of humor and shared his love of music with his many friends and colleagues.