When Patrick Yacono of Electronic Arts met his associates for dinner downtown last Friday he complained of not feeling well, indigestion, perhaps.
The next night, Oct. 27, the multi-talented musician, composer and audio expert, who said he lived his dream of working features, died of massive heart failure at Alexian Brothers hospital. He was 38.
Funeral services will be held Sunday, Nov. 4 at Willow Creek Community Church, 67 East Algonquin Road, South Barrington. Visitation will be 4-6 p.m. with services at 6 p.m. and a reception immediately following at 7:15 p.m.
His friends and colleagues called him smart and talented, a Renaissance man, a one-man band with quality and class, a musician and composer, who could do virtually everything in sound recording and in his more recent interest in videography.
Mr. Yacono and his wife, Christy, had owned and operated Barrington-based Signal Hill Sound for three years, until last February when he closed it for the stability of a sound designer’s position with Electronic Arts on the Near North side, a few blocks from where he had spent a good part of his audio career.
Steve Ponte of Sweetwater Sound, his close friend since 1994, said “Patrick could do just about anything in audio?do post, cut audio as fast as anyone. He could create Surround Sound where there was mono. He was a composer of great orchestral scores.”
Mr. Yacono’s recent interest in videography connected him with former Bulls player, Dickey Simpkins, for whom he shot video for Simpkins’ website.
He put together a team of Simpkins, producer Jim Corboy of Picture Show Films, adman Mike Waterkotte and directors John Komnenich and Grant Weiss to produce a high level mentorship program for up-and-coming basketball players.
“The idea of the program,” said Ponte, “was to get the pros behind young players so they could make the right decisions, the hard, long-term decisions.”
They had taken the idea to Brand Jordan earlier this year and were going to present it to Nike executives.
“Friendly competitor” Brian Reed of Bam! Music said he often marveled at Mr. Yacono’s many projects and ideas. “I used to say, I don’t know he sleeps, he had so many different things going and he was so good at them all.”
Corboy called Mr. Yacono “a great creative leader and one of those folks in the Chicago production community who attracted other like-minded folks, who wanted to do great work that also was significant, that people could have faith in.”
His resume contains over 30 film credits for sound