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Undine Smith Moore

Female | Composers


b. 1904 - 1988

Undine Smith Moore began publishing relatively late in her career and belongs to that group of Black composers who had long teaching careers at Black colleges in the South. She taught music for forty-five years at Virginia State College, Pertersburg, Virginia, where her students included such outstanding musicians as Billy Taylor, Leon Thomspon, Louise Toppin, and Camilla Williams. Moore graduated with highest honors from Fisk University, Nashville, Tennessee, and was awarded the first scholarship to Julliard School given to a Fisk graduate. She received the MA and a Professional Diploma in Music from Columbia University, New York. An honorary Doctor of Music degree was awarded to Moore by Virginia State College (1972) and Indiana Unviersity (1976). Moore's compositional output includes choral works, solo works for voice, flute, piano, and chamber works. Some of her more familiar compositions are Afro-American Suite for flute, violoncello, and piano; Lord, We Give Thanks to Thee for chorus, "Daniel, Servant of the Lord," for chorus, and "Love, Let the Wind Cry How I Adore Thee." Her oratorio, Scenes from the Life of a Martyr, on the life of Martin Luther King, Jr., was nominated for a Nobel Prize.

Source: Perkins Holly, Ellistine. Biographies of Black Composers and Songwriters; A Supplementary Textbook. Iowa:Wm. C. Brown Publishers, 1990.

Undine Smith Moore Papers (Emory University)



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