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‘La Cage aux Folles’ composer Jerry Herman has died at the age of 88

The composer was diagnosed with HIV back in the 1980s

By Steve Brown

Words: Steve Brown

Legendary Broadway composer Jerry Herman has died at the age of 88.

Best known for composing the LGBTQ anthem, ‘I Am What I Am’, the Broadway composer had a successful career and went on to win two Tony Awards and two Grammys.

As well as his iconic LGBTQ anthem, Herman created the music and lyrics for a number of Broadway hits including Hello, Dolly! and La Cage aux Folles.

According to the Associated Press, the mutli-award winning composer – who was diagnosed with HIV in the 1980s – sadly passed away from pulmonary complications.

The BBC report Herman had been living with his partner, real estate broker Terry Marler, at the time of his death.

Following news of his death, hundreds flocked to social media to pay tribute to the iconic composer.

Bernadette Peters wrote: “How Sad,,,Jerry Herman has passed away ,,,of course he made it to Christmas and left us the next day !!

“He was always so enthusiastic and uplifting about things and gave us the wonderful show Hello Dolly among others !!RIP Jerry Dearest ❤️❤️❤️❤️🎄”

Theatre director and composer Matthew Bourne also wrote: “One of the all-time great Broadway Composers … his feel-good shows full of melody and joy will live forever ( and are just what we need right now?)

“Some may say old fashioned? I’d say timeless ❤️ RIP #JerryHerman”

And Harvey Fierstein commented: “Jerry Herman lost his hard fought battle last night and we lost one of the greats.

“A collaborator and friend for almost 40 years, I cannot thank him enough for his love, trust, encouragement, support and laughter. Well done, Mr Herman. Bravo!”