Composer, lyricist Stephen Sondheim receives lifetime achievement award

PETERBOROUGH, N.H. — Broadway composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim is being awarded one of the top honors in the arts world: the Edward MacDowell Medal for lifetime achievement.

The award is being presented Sunday at the MacDowell Colony, the prestigious retreat for artists, writers and composers in Peterborough, N.H. This is the first time the medal has been awarded for achievement in musical theater.

Henny Ray Abrams, AP (File)
Stephen Sondheim

Past recipients include Robert Frost and Georgia O’Keefe.

In a statement when the award was announced, Sondheim called the medal a “sort of homecoming,” noting that as a child he used to play compositions by Edward MacDowell, for whom the prize is named.

Sondheim, who is openly gay, has won more Tony Awards than any other composer. His hit musicals include “Follies,” “A Little Night Music” and “Sweeney Todd.”

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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