January 13, 2022


Terry Teachout published more pieces in COMMENTARY than any other writer in the magazine’s 76-year history. He was a monthly contributor for a quarter century—first as classical music critic and then as critic-at-large. On just two occasions in the 13 years of my editorship did he miss a month, our new issue being one of the two—he was unable to meet a deadline for an article on Buster Keaton because of a loved one’s health problem.

Just an hour ago I heard the dreadful news that Terry died in his sleep today, a few weeks shy of his 66th birthday. The loss to his loved ones, the loss to the American theatre he both championed as a critic and mastered as a playwright, and the loss to the broader American culture he knew more fully than anyone else in our time cannot be overstated.

I’m genuinely shocked to hear of his passing; I interviewed him once or twice for PJM’s old Sirius-XM show, and loved his Commentary columns and books.

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