Finding His Voice

Catherine Parsons Smith

in William Grant Still

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2000 | ISBN: 9780520215429
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520921573 | DOI:
Finding His Voice

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This chapter takes a look at Still's stay in Los Angeles, a city that had a relatively relaxed racial climate, and a place where Still found enough support for him to pursue his career as a composer. It shows that his decision to remain in Los Angeles and stay away from the center of all things musical represents a departure from the norm for composers of opera and symphony. His choice to refuse the position as “university composer” at Howard University only confirms his decision to turn away from both the modernists and the Harlem Renaissance. This chapter also considers some of his successes and failures during his stay in Los Angeles.

Keywords: Los Angeles; opera composers; symphony composers; successes and failures; modernists; Harlem Renaissance

Chapter.  10589 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: American Music

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