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SMTD Alumni win 2019 Grammy Awards

Once again, alumni of University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance have won multiple Grammy Awards. The ceremony was held Sunday, February 10, 2019.

Veteran Grammy winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (both BFA ’06, musical theatre) took home “Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media” for the film The Greatest Showman. The songwriting duo previously won the Best Musical Theatre Album Grammy for the Dean Evan Hansen cast recording.


Timothy McAllister (BM ’95, MM ’97, DMA ’02, saxophone), current SMTD professor of saxophone, is featured on the NAXOS album Spiritualist, which won the coveted “Best Classical Compendium” award. The album features four concertos by Kenneth Fuchs including his Saxophone Concerto Rush, performed by McAllister with the London Symphony Orchestra under JoAnn Falletta and also featuring alumnus D.J. Sparr (DMA ’03, MM ’00, composition), on electric guitar. Albums featuring McAllister previously won Grammy Awards in 2016 (City Noir by the St. Louis Symphony, on which McAllister performed John Adams’s City Noir as well as his Saxophone Concerto) and 2018 (Gavin Bryars: The Fifth Century with the PRISM Quarter and mixed choir The Crossing).


Finally, SMTD musical theatre alumnus Etai Benson (BFA’09) originated the role of Papi in The Band’s Visit, which won the Grammy for “Best Musical Theatre Album.”