Thursday, April 22, 2010

William Grant Still is First 'Composer of the Week' at

[TOP: William Grant Still: Symphonies Nos. 4, 'Autochthonous' & 5, 'Western Hemisphere'; 'Poem'; Fort Smith Symphony; John Jeter, conductor; Naxos 8.559603 (2009); Cover painting ”Crossing America in an express train, United States” (1859) by Nathaniel Currier and James Merrit Ives, The Art Archive. BOTTOM: William Grant Still (Photo is the sole property of William Grant Still Music, and is used with permission.)]

“Because composers rule, we’re starting a new tradition of publishing a post honoring a different composer each week. First up is William Grant Still, an African-American composer and Salon97 fan favorite!
b. May 11, 1895 in Woodville, Mississippi
d. December 3, 1978 in Los Angeles, California
The first African-American to conduct a major symphony orchestra in the U.S. and the first African-American composer to have a symphony performed by a major orchestra, along with being the first to present an opera with a major opera company, William Grant Still was deemed the 'Dean of African-American Composers.'” has published this April 21, 2010 comment by William J. Zick:
“Congratulations on the excellent choice of William Grant Still as the first composer to be 'Composer of the Week!' William Grant Still’s complete Works List has been compiled by Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma and is featured in its entirety on the William Grant Still page at The Symphonies Nos. 4 and 5 of Still were released on Naxos 8.559603 (2009) and are worth hearing along with his earlier symphonies.

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