Casey Alan Sanderson, known on the Outer Cape as a prodigious musical talent, died unexpectedly on Sept. 10, 2022, at his home in Truro. The cause of death has not yet been determined, said a family member. He was 44.
The son of Dorothy Fritz and Russell Sanderson, Casey was born on Oct. 1, 1977 at Cape Cod Hospital. He attended the Truro Central School and Provincetown High School and earned a bachelor of arts in music at Westfield State College.
His aunt Susan Fritz Souza recalled how, as a toddler, Casey would sit with his grandmother Jane and play the piano by ear. He became proficient at both the piano and organ as well as the clarinet, saxophone, flute, guitar, and drums. “He was self-taught and extremely talented,” said his friend Betty White.
His childhood friend Sarah White Smith said music brought them together. “He didn’t love school,” Sarah recalled, but he’d spend three periods a day in music teacher Linda Squire Weissenberger’s room. Casey lived for music, Sarah added.
He performed in a series of Provincetown High musicals: Annie, Mame, The Music Man, Guys and Dolls, Hello Dolly, and Oklahoma. He was also one of five editors of the 1995 Long Pointer, his class yearbook.
In a social media post, Weissenberger, who was his music teacher from kindergarten through 12th grade, remembered how he walked into her kindergarten class carrying his Karen Carpenter lunch box with all his treasures inside. When she retired, he took over her position at the high school. They also worked together at the United Methodist Church in Provincetown, where she was the pianist and he the choir director. “Then we switched,” she said.
Another childhood friend, Denise Russell Page, said that she and Casey were in the Lower Cape Concert Band together. “He was such a gifted musician,” she said. “He could play almost anything and play it well. He was good at following singers and was a great accompanist. He brought out the best in the people he was playing for.”
Michael Steers, who performs in Provincetown as Anita Cocktail, said that he met Casey working at the Porch Bar and they became musical collaborators. “I had stopped singing because I didn’t have a piano player,” Michael said. “His music skills were insane.” He recalled Casey’s work with Counter Productions, which produced The King and I and Fiddler on the Roof with Provincetown High School.
In recent years, Casey became the caretaker for his mother.
In addition to his parents, he is survived by his aunts, Susan Fritz Souza of Salem, N.H., Cathy Fritz of Provincetown, and Jeanne Fritz Worley of Dennis; his uncles, Edward Fritz of Hurley, N.Y., Joseph Fritz of Braintree, and John Lee Silva; and his cousins, John Fields and Sherree Silva.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 27 at St. Peter the Apostle Church in Provincetown. There will be no calling hours.