News just in: Midori loses her manager

News just in: Midori loses her manager


norman lebrecht

November 24, 2010

Byron Gustafson, an artist manager who guided the violinist Midori from gawky teens to mature stardom, has died, his agency has announced. He was 56.

In addition to managing her career, Gustafson was a director of her child education foundation, Midori and Friends. In a sea full of sharks, he was a gentle dolphin.

Here’s an internal memo from Midori and Friends:

To: Board Members:

From: Judi Linden

It is with great sadness that I have to relay the news of Byron’s passing last evening. As an esteemed board member and leader in the arts field, Byron did so much for so many of us.

He was a mentor and a manager to Midori from the time she started her career over twenty years ago and a fellow colleague and friend to so many of us.  His kindness, and gentle nature, along with his intuitive understanding of the performing arts, were just a few of the extraordinary qualities he brought to everything and everyone he helped.

Through his personal passion and professional work, he made such a meaningful difference in our lives and organizations.

Please know that the details regarding any service have not yet been sent to us, once they are I will forward them to you.


  • I’ve rarely heard anyone speak about an arts manager with such respect, appreciation and reverence. So touching. Byron Gustafson must have been a rare soul. As you aptly wrote, a gentle dolphin in a sea of sharks.