Sammy Sussman (b. 1999) is a reporter, composer, bassist and (hopefully!) author from Bedford Hills, NY. He will be a senior composition major next year in the University of Michigan's School of Music, Theatre & Dance. Sammy studies composition with Evan Chambers and bass with Marion Hayden. Some of his previous music instructors include Kristin Kuster, Paul Schoenfeld, Michael Daugherty, David Conte, Narcis Bonet, Michel Merlet, Kyle Blaha and Becki Advocate.
Sammy's compositions have been recognized by the American Composers Forum, the Foundation for Modern Music and the National Association for Music Education. He received also received an honorable mention in the New York Philharmonic's New World Composition Challenge. With his friend Allison Taylor, he wrote a two-act comedic musical, "Diseducated," that was premiered through the Blank Space Workshop. Sammy and Allie also recently wrote, recorded and released The Bachelor: The Musical: A Video, an Instagram-oriented musical theater multimedia experience.
As a reporter, Sammy has written for The Michigan Daily, Bridge, VAN Magazine and the Detroit Jewish News. His investigative reporting career began in September, 2018, when Sammy received a tip about alleged sexual misconduct by Stephen Shipps, the Chair of Strings and a former Associate Dean at the University of Michigan. Months later, Sammy's article in The Michigan Daily uncovered 40 years of sexual misconduct and harassment allegations against Shipps from former students and staff at three separate academic institutions. This reporting was featured in the Columbia Journalism Review and the Detroit Free Press' year-ending series “This journalism made us jealous in 2018.”
After Sammy's internship was postponed this past summer, he wrote a book about the life of his great-grandfather, Otto Schirn, an Austrian Jewish academic turned Jewish cultural leader. Sammy's uncovered the brave story of his great-grandfather's brief journalism career: from 1937-1938, Otto reported under a pen name for a Belgian newspaper about the fall of Austria's anti-Nazi, Austrofascist government. Excerpts from this book have been published in The Michigan Daily and the Detroit Jewish News.
Sammy is an alumni of the New York Youth Symphony Composition Program and the European American Musical Alliance-Nadia Boulanger Institute. He is also an alumni of the Fox Lane High School, where his creative research project on the "L'Engelian tesseract between Oppenheimer's Trinity atomic test and Tchaikovsky's Serenade for Strings" was awarded the Tingley Scholarship. He is a member of ASCAP.