Price, Florence B(eatrice née Smith)

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Price, Florence B(eatrice née Smith)

Price, Florence B(eatrice née Smith) , black American teacher and composer; b. Little Rock, Ark., April 9, 1888; d. Chicago, June 3, 1953. She studied with Chadwick and Converse at the New England Cons. of Music in Boston, graduating in 1906. She had been publishing her compositions since she was 11 (1899); in 1928 she won a prize from G. Schirmer for her At the Cotton Gin for Piano; around this time she was also writing musical jingles for radio commercials. Her first notable success came in 1932 with her Ist Sym. (winner of the Wanamaker Award; perf. by the Chicago Sym. Orch. at the Century of Progress Exhibition in 1933); she became known as the first black woman to write syms.


ORCH.: 6 syms.: No. 1 (1931–32), Mississippi River Symphony (1934), D minor (n.d.), No. 3 (1940), G minor (n.d.), and Colonial Dance Symphony (n.d.); Ethiopia’s Shadow in America (1932); Piano Concerto (1934); 2 violin concertos: No. 1 (n.d.) and No. 2 (1952); 2 concert overtures on Negro spirituals; Piano Concerto in 1 Movement; Rhapsody for Piano and Orch.; Songs of the Oak, tone poem. CHAMBER : Negro Folksongs in Counterpoint for String Quartet; 2 piano quintets; pieces for Violin and Piano; piano works; organ music. VOCAL : Choral music; songs; arrangements of spirituals.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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Price, Florence B(eatrice née Smith)

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