Avril Coleridge-Taylor

It’s been 2 weeks since I received my copies of the (out-of-print) International Dictionary of Black Composers, and I have been reading a few entries every day.  The book was edited by the late Helen Walker-Hill, musicologist and wife of…

Millicent James

It has been my pleasure throughout the great Pandemic Summer and Fall 2020 to have been working with a group of British women composers for an upcoming livestream for the Spitalfields Festival. I’d like to feature a few of them…

Bobbie-Jane Gardner

The second in my series of the new generation of women composers is Bobbie-Jane Gardner. I had the pleasure of working with her on her commissioned piece for solo viola, which was premiered at the Spitalfields Music festival in December…

Jessie Montgomery

This piece was performed in our weekly chamber music masterclass at Hartt recently. I'm always thrilled when our students reach make it a priority to play music of living composers. #blackcomposers #womencomposers 

The entry is reposted from the composer's website…

Eddie South

Edward Otha “Eddie” South was born in the confusingly named town of Louisiana, Missouri in 1904.  Encyclopedic entries on Eddie South are short and consistent, being content to merely state that if it were not for the universal racism of…

Daniel Bernard Roumain

Daniel Bernard Roumain, (DBR) born 1970 to Haitian-American parents, is a classically trained composer/violinist and activist. His compositions and arrangements, which have been performed by the orchestras of Dallas, Des Moines, Memphis, San Antonio, St. Louis, the Chicago Sinfonietta, the…

T.J. Anderson

(Excerpted from the composer’s webpage) 

Thomas Jefferson (T.J.) Anderson was born August 17, 1928 in Coatesville, Pennsylvania and received degrees from West Virginia State College, Penn State University, and a Ph.D in Composition from the University of Iowa. He taught…

Howard Swanson

In October 1978, Leontyne Price performed for an enthusiastic audience at the Carter White House.  “Dazzling a White House audience” read the Washington Post review the next day. Her program included arias by Haendel, Puccini, and Strauss’ Four Last Songs…

Clarence Cameron White

Born on this day (Aug 17)  in 1879 or 1880, Clarence Cameron White was a violinist and composer quite active in the first half of the 20th century. 

The story of how he came to study violin with Will Marion…

Joseph Bologne/Chevalier de Saint-Georges

Joseph Bologne, aka the Chevalier de Saint-Georges (1745 – 1799) was a champion fencer, classical composer, virtuoso violinist, and conductor of the leading symphony orchestra in Paris. Born in the French colony of Guadeloupe, he was the son of George…

Mary Watkins

Mary Watkins (1939-), American composer and pianist, has written for orchestra, opera, chamber ensembles, jazz ensembles, film, theatre, dance, and choral groups.  She was trained classically at Howard University and has received several grants from the National Endowment for the…

Michael Mosoeu Moerane

Something to read, and something to listen to. 

Michael Mosoeu Moerane (1904-1980) was born in Mangoloaneng, a village in the district of the Eastern Cape of South Africa. His father, descended from a long line of Basotho chiefs, was an…