It was my pleasure and privilege to know Elliott Carter for over forty years – first as a mentor (when I studied with him at Juilliard) and later as a colleague and friend. I rejoiced in his longevity as well as his singular accomplishments and felt special pleasure at his late-in-life blossoming in his work.
I always enjoyed and admired his intellectual depth and his wide-ranging musical interests. A music critic once asked me “what could you tell me about Elliott Carter that would surprise me?” and my response was “perhaps seeing him come out of the Juilliard library with a Schütz cantata in his hands.” That was, indeed, a surprise to the critic, but not to any of us who knew Elliott.
Elliott Carter was a one-of-a-kind soul.