The Washington Post

Kenneth Pasmanick, bassonist

Kenneth Pasmanick, 88, a former principal bassoonist at the National Symphony Orchestra who played with the orchestra for 50 years, died March 6 at the Washington Home hospice in the District.

He had a subdural hematoma suffered in an accidental fall, said his son, Philip Pasmanick.

Mr. Pasmanick retired from the NSO after the 1996-97 season. During his career, he also had played in concert series at the Dumbarton Oaks estate in Washington, Washington National Cathedral, the National Gallery of Art and the Washington Opera Society. In many summers, he played bassoon and saxophone in orchestras at the Carter Barron Amphitheatre in the District.

As a young man, he performed in New York with jazz musicians such as Benny Goodman, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, his family said.

Kenneth Pasmanick was born in Rochester, N.Y., where he attended the Eastman School of Music. During World War II, he played in an Army band. He attended the Juilliard music school in New York City, but he left before graduating to join the NSO in 1947. He later received a degree from American University.

He taught music at universities and institutes in the Washington-Baltimore area and also gave private music lessons. In summers during the 1960s, he coached the woodwinds sections and played with the national symphonies of El Salvador and Costa Rica.

Survivors include his wife, whom he married in 1946, Frances Cohen Pasmanick of Washington; two children, Philip Pasmanick of San Francisco and Anne Pasmanick of Washington; and three granddaughters.

— Bart Barnes

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