Jacobs professor David Ward-Steinman dies at 78

Jacobs School of Music Adjunct professor David Ward-Steinman died Wednesday, according to a release from the Jacobs Schools of Music.

Ward-Steinman, 78, was a faculty composer originally from Alexandria, La. He was an adjunct professor in both composition and music in general studies since 2004. He taught courses on diverse subjects from interrelationships among the arts in different cultures to the music of both Asia and Africa, according to the release.

Before arriving in Bloomington, Ward-Steinman was distinguished professor emeritus and composer-in-residence at San Diego State University.

There, he directed the Comprehensive Musicianship Program and the New Music Ensemble.

Ward-Steinman authored many books, including “Toward a Comparative Structural Theory of the Arts.” He also wrote a chapter on jazz legend David Baker’s compositions in “David Baker — A Legacy in Music” and wrote several articles for different journals, according to the music school.

In his spare time, Ward-Steinman was also an avid airplane pilot.

He began his study of music early, as his mother taught him piano and theory. Other teachers include John Venettozzi and Edward Kilenyi for piano and composers Darius Mihaud, Milton Babbitt and Aaron Copland, Nadia Boulanger and Burrill Philips.

In 1966, Ward-Steinman was a White House reception honoree alongside jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie and Tony Award winner Edie Adams. Additionally, he received numerous awards, including the Bearns Prize from Columbia University and the Outstanding Professor Award from the Trustees of the California State Universities and Colleges.

He was also listed in the “100 Distinguished Graduates” of Florida State University by Florida State’s Alumni Association in 2009, according to the music school.

From 1989 to 1990, he was senior Fulbright Scholar to Australia. Before that, in 1982, Ward-Steinman traveled in Indonesia, giving concerts and lectures under the sponsorship of the U.S. State Department’s International Communications Agency, according to the music school.

Just a few of his major commissions include the San Diego Ballet, Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Joffrey Ballet School in New York City.

Ward-Steinman is survived by his wife and Jacobs School of Music professor of music education, Patrice Madura Ward-Steinman, two children and three grandchildren.

Kathrine Schulze

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