Michael Eagan, a classical musician and composer, died of an apparent heart attack. His body was found on Aug. 11, but the exact day of death has not been released. He was 55.
The California native attended the Royal Conservatory of Music in The Hague, the Netherlands, with plans to become a classical guitarist. But Eagan switched to the lute after hearing Julian Bream perform a selection of Renaissance music in concert. Eagan then spent two decades building a reputation as one of the foremost lute players in the United States. He performed and recorded music with several chamber orchestras, including the American Bach Soloists, the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Musica Pacifica.
In 1993, Eagan and baroque cello player Mark Chatfield co-founded the Musica Angelica, a Los Angeles-based orchestra dedicated to performing music written in the medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and Classical periods. Musica Angelica also performs contemporary compositions written in an early music style. Ten of these newer pieces were composed by Eagan.
Laments, eulogies and choral arrangements were performed in Eagan’s honor last Friday at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena. A memorial service and concert is planned for Sept. 1 at the All Saints’ Church in Beverly Hills.