Schirmer acquires publishing rights to works by Florence Price, long overlooked composer

Posted on: November 16, 2018

“In 1933, the composer Florence Price became the first African-American woman to have a symphony performed by a major American orchestra. But her work faded from concert halls over the years,” writes Michael Cooper in Thursday’s (11/15) New York Times. “Her music has been rediscovered recently, particularly after a trove of her manuscripts was discovered in 2009 … And, on Thursday, the music publisher G. Schirmer announced that it had acquired the worldwide rights to her catalog. ‘It’s my hope that Florence Price’s contribution to the canon of American music will finally be recognized and properly assessed,’ Robert Thompson, the president of G. Schirmer, wrote in an email…. In addition to symphonies and violin concertos, she also wrote arrangements of spirituals: The contralto Marian Anderson sang Price’s arrangement of ‘My Soul’s Been Anchored in De Lord’ at her historic concert at the Lincoln Memorial in 1939. Price died in 1953. Renewed interest in her work has led to performances this year by Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s and the Fort Smith Symphony. Her Piano Concerto will be performed later this month by the pianist Aaron Diehl and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra.”

Posted November 16, 2018