Florence Beatrice Price

American composer, pianist, organist and teacher Florence Beatrice Price was born Florence Smith in Little Rock, Arkansas on 9 April 1887. After early guidance from her music teacher mother, she studied composition at the New England Conservatory of Music with George Chadwick and Frederick Converse.

Florence Price is known for being the first African-American woman to gain recognition as a composer of orchestral music and to have it played by a major orchestra.

Price settled in Chicago, where she died on 3 June 1953, aged sixty-six, leaving over three hundred compositions. Manuscripts of many of these were discovered in 2009 at Price's summer home near St Anne, Illinois.


A selection of articles about Florence Beatrice Price

Spotlight. A Great Release - Geoff Pearce appreciates Laura van der Heijden and Jâms Coleman's cello and piano recital. '... the performers do not appear to be recorded with microphones too close, which results in realistic blending, and also a feeling of distance, perhaps reflecting the distant and mysterious qualities of the moonlight.'

Spotlight. Virtuosic Flair - Gerald Fenech recommends dance music played by Daniel Hope and the Zurich Chamber Orchestra. 'Daniel Hope's fiddle-playing is just phenomenal ...'

Spotlight. A Complete Triumph - Gerald Fenech is exhilarated by the Philadelphia Orchestra's recording of symphonies by Florence Price and William Dawson. '... a vibrant energy that makes the music sound as fresh and exciting as when it was first heard.'

CD Spotlight. Stunning Performances - Gerald Fenech reviews two discs of music by American composer Florence Price. 'This is music overflowing with an abundance of melody, tinged with sadness and regret, which is crying out to be heard.'

Ensemble. An Important Voice - Mike Wheeler listens to Florence Price and Dvořák

Classical music news. Choral Music by Black Composers - Oxford University Press publishes Marques L A Garrett's significant choral music anthology

Ensemble. Complete Assurance - A delectable recital by Jeneba Kanneh-Mason, heard by Mike Wheeler

Classical music news - American Invention - The New York Virtuoso Singers present a February 2023 concert of first performances

CD Spotlight. Melodic Invention and Heartfelt Sincerity - Gerald Fenech recommends a Naxos recording of orchestral music by Florence Beatrice Price. 'John Jeter and his Württembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen provide truly splendid performances, vibrant and often pulsating, and superbly balanced.'

Ensemble. A Welcome Opportunity - Mike Wheeler listens to the recital 'Colour My Song' at the 2022 Buxton Festival

Classical music news. June 2022 Newsletter - Watch and listen to our June 2022 newsletter - a special feature on women composers

CD Spotlight. Emotional Warmth and Richness of Melody - Gerald Fenech listens to music by Florence Price. '... this trailblazing composer must be listened to ...'