Florida mourns Pavarotti’s impresaria

We have been informed of the death this morning of Judy Drucker, a Florida powerfhouse who brought the greatest musicians to Miami and formed a mutual admiration society with Luciano Pavarotti.

She was 91.

A soprano who trained at Juilliard and Curtis, she married in 1947 and founded her Great Artists Series in Miami Beach 19 years later.

She presented Richard Tucker, Vladimir Horowitz, Plácido Domingo, José Carreras, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Van Cliburn, Itzhak Perlman, Evgeny Kissin, Leonard Bernstein, Cecilia Bartoli, Yo Yo Ma, Kiri Te Kanawa, and Valery Gergiev, among others.

She never took No for an answer.

She even made it onto Slipped Disc.

UPDATE: Full tribute here.

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  • Well, as much as Judy would like to believe it, not everyone is mourning — such as those of us who were subjected to her inappropriately imperious, obnoxious, and uncouth behavior. Anyone with access to money can present big stars anywhere, so it’s not as though she had any exceptional magnetism or genius — but of course don’t tell her that!

  • She presented a recital by Vladimir Horowitz in 1982. I wrote her and asked if I could buy a ticket since I wanted to travel from Canada to attend. With the high demand for tickets that always happened with Horowitz concerts, the easy thing to do would be to ignore my letter, or respond with a polite ‘sorry, no.’ Instead, not having ever met or corresponded with me, I received a prime ticket in the mail a few days later along with an invoice. Horowitz cancelled, but 15 years later I met Judy at a party in New York. I told her what she had done and what it had meant to me. I told her I was a fan. She listened with a huge smile, gave me a big hug, and we talked for 30 minutes. She was a class act.

  • I knew her back when our choir sang for her concert Operas – she was always a delight – and would often sit in the stands with us for Trovatore, Aida, Turandot… she let me in to see Horowitz after one concert in the 70s! We will all miss her boundless love and energy ♥♥♥♥♥♥

  • In the middle of an RPO American tour with Ashkenazy conducting, we arrived in Miami for a one off concert with Pavarotti and Perlman. Perlman went up to Ashkenazy and said “ Vova have you slept with this woman?” Vova said “ Of course not!” So he went to Pavarotti “ Luciano have you slept with this woman?” “ No of course not!” Then Perlman said “ We’ll I sure haven’t so what are we all doing here?”!

  • I’m very saddened to see her go. I first met her backstage after an Erick Friedman recital in Miami Beach in 1975. She was also very kind to forward a thank you note I wrote to Viktoria Mullova after she played at the Dade County Auditorium in Miami, FL in the early 1980s. I treasure the autographed pictures I have of Mr. Friedman and Ms. Mullova, thanks to Judy Drucker. RIP dear lady.

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