Theodore (Ted) Orr

Theodore (Ted) Orr passed away on August 1 at his home in Woodstock after a long illness. Ted was born on November 6,1956. He was the son of Grace (Palumbo) Orr and the late Dr. Robert Orr.

Ted is survived by his mother, Grace Orr, his wife, Deborah Day, his children, Alana Orr and James Orr, his beloved grandchildren, Ostara Orr, Eliza Orr, Emma Orr and Mars Gartmann. Also surviving are his siblings, Mickey Orr, Tom Orr, Emily Orr, Peter Orr, Mike Orr, and Deborah Orr.

Ted’s greatest joys in life were family, music, his weekly poker game (25 years running), and his community. He loved playing games and telling stories with his grandchildren, and playing music with his children, Alana and James. He inspired both of his kids to become very musical, and he encouraged every form of creativity among his grandchildren.

He was a sound engineer for over 40 years and a musician all his life. Ted’s music world was vast, including: years at Showtime at the Apollo; the broadcast of Woodstock ’94; a massive studio installation in Kuala Lumpur: and he was International product specialist, demonstrating for PASSAC Midi guitars. He recorded, mixed, and mastered a multitude of musicians and bands. He was Head Engineer for Sertso Studio and the Creative Music Studio Archive Project, digitizing tapes of sessions and concerts from the ’70s on, now housed at Columbia University.

The Creative Music Studio was Karl Berger and Ingrid Sertso’s school where World Music and Free Jazz artists taught and interacted with the students. Ted was a part of CMS from almost the beginning. He and his wife Deborah met there and she married the cook.

Ted was the soundman at The Joyous Lake, Tinker Street Cafe, and other local Woodstock venues throughout the years.

Most of the community knew Ted as a musician. He played and arranged dozens of benefit concerts for people in need within the community. Musically, he gave his all, whether there was a crowd of a few, or hundreds of thousands.

He played guitar, Midi guitar and tabla; playing Rock n’ Roll, World Music, Free Jazz, Funk, Blues, and sounds that had no category.

Early bands included Mind Control Salsa and the “NYC downtown scene” Swollen Monkeys. He played Woodstock ’94 with Futu Futu. Other bands included Blob; 420 Funk Mob; Dharma Bums; Creative Music Orchestra; Blue Food; Salted Bros; Shred, Thump, and Flow; Chris and Ted’s Excellent Adventure; Soundpainting, Amrod Brothers Band, and the cross pollination with many other Woodstock bands and musicians.

Ted is dearly missed by his mother, wife, kids, grandchildren, and family, who deeply appreciate the outpouring of love from the community.

The family will hold a memorial tribute at an appropriate date, place, and time in the future.

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