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American composer Donald H White was born on 28 February 1921 in Narberth, Pennsylvania. He studied music education at Temple University, Philadelphia, and composition with Persichetti at the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music in 1946 and with Bernard Rogers and Howard Hanson at the Eastman School of Music in 1952.
From 1948 until 1981 he was chairman of composition and music theory studies at DePauw University, Greencastle, Indiana, where from 1974-8 he was also director of the school of music. From 1980 he was chairman of the music department at Central Washington University, Ellensburg, Washington.
White died on 4 October 2016, aged ninety-five.