Composer and virtuoso flutist was co-founder of new-music ensemble

Times Staff Writer

Dorothy Stone, an award-winning composer and virtuoso flutist who in 1981 co-founded the new-music ensemble the California EAR Unit, has died. She was 49.

Stone was found dead March 7 by police at her home in Green Valley, Calif. No foul play is suspected, said her father, Jerome J. Stone of Kingston, Pa. Results of an autopsy are pending, he said.

Dorothy Ann Stone was born June 7, 1958, in Kingston. She earned a bachelor’s degree in music at the Manhattan School of Music in New York, where she studied with Harvey Sollberger, and a master of fine arts degree at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia.

While at CalArts, she also studied composition with Stephen “Lucky” Mosko, Mel Powell, Leonard Stein and Morton Subotnick. She and Mosko were married in 1989.

During her performing career, Stone premiered solo works throughout the U.S. and Europe, and was showcased on National Public Radio and WGBH’s “Art of the States” program. She also built a special electronic system for her solo flute composition, “Wizard Ball,” which received a Freeman Composition Award as well as prizes from the International League of Women Composers and the ARS Electronica festival in Brussels.


She recorded for Cambria, Crystal, New Albion and other labels and played on Subotnick’s Voyager CD-ROM, “All My Hummingbirds Have Alibis,” which was written for her and members of the EAR Unit.

Her New World Records solo album, “None but the Lonely Flute,” includes works composed for her by Milton Babbitt and Mosko, who wrote all of his flute music for her.

Other composers who wrote for her include Rand Steiger, William Roper, Ann Millikan and Louis Andriessen.

She and Mosko directed the U.S. premiere of Karlheinz Stockhausen’s “Sternklang” for the Los Angeles Olympic Arts Festival in 1984.

Mosko died at their Green Valley home in 2005 at age 58. The couple had no children. In addition to her father, Stone is survived by her mother, Dorothy B. Stone of Kingston; and two brothers, Jerome E. Stone of Kingston and Donald G. Stone of Mountain Top, Pa. A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Eternal Valley Funeral Home, 23287 Sierra Highway, Santa Clarita.