Contemporary African American Composers, Diverse Voices, New Music

Bill Doggett is a specialist in curating and programming content.

Contemporary African American composers are diverse in their respective accomplishments and collectively represent a brilliant mosaic of exceptional music.
Their compositions are rooted in and influenced by a great history of mid 20th Century African American composers who preceded them: William Grant Still, William Dawson, Ulysses Kay, Margaret Bonds, Florence Price, Undine Smith Moore among others.
Jazz and African poly rhythmic influences showcased in the short and extended symphonic works of Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, Thelonious Monk are also part of the critical  fabric of inspiration.
These diverse and rich influences brought to the table of American Music Schools with a pedadogical and compositional focus on post War late Neo Classicism and  Twelve Tone worlds of Igor Stravinsky, Arnold Schoenberg, Elliott Carter and Pierre Boulez*  informed the formal sources of compositional influence of  many contemporary African American composers. * Agon, Requiem Canticles, Variations for Orchestra  and Le Marteau sans Maitre.
This page is dedicated to showcase a sample of exceptional African American composers of the late 20th Century and present day. 
The music is diversely rich and speaks with incredible poignance.
The repertoire which I have meticulously chosen and programed is done with intention of showcasing programming and commission opportunities for conductors, Artistic Administrators of Symphony Orchestras, Opera Houses and Festivals. 
This page showcases outstanding New music that adds value to Creative Place Making –a concept in The Performing Arts  of value added communal spaces of belonging such as at Concert Halls where multi tiered shared experiences and pride in those experiences take root and blossom akin to a Community Garden  in which all are welcomed to participate, help grow, sustain and to share in the harvest. 
Creative Placing Making….why is it important to the future of The Performing Arts?  
What does a commitment to diversity in the music performed, the guest artists featured  have to do with the events in Baltimore, Ferguson, New York , Charleston and Chicago?  
Why does diversity even matter in The Classical Performing Arts?
 After all, let’s be real, there are no Black or Hispanic people active in Classical Music….   I have never seen a Black or Hispanic Guest Soloist in a Symphony Concert and certainly not a Black Conductor…..   I mean ….. Blacks and Hispanics are only into  Gangster Rap and Hip Hop….  right?   
Who ever heard of a Black Composer anyway .  After all, Composers of Classical Music are only White men….  Blacks really have nothing to offer outside of that troubled ex slave named Joe who sings Old Man River in Showboat or as the dysfunctional drug addicted people of Catfish Row from Porgy and Bess…….. just like those rioters on CNN in Minneapolis, Portland, Baltimore, Milwaukee, Ferguson, Chicago and Los Angeles 25 years ago
I am honored to have represented  world renowned composer, Anthony Davis ,   
recipient of The 2020 Pulitzer Prize 
in Music  
Adolphus Hailstork,  2019-2022 
often regarded as “The Dean of African American Composers”, 
Richard Thompson  2012-21 and  Roy Jennings  during 2015 
For a discussion of the controversies and obstacles of 
“Composing while Black “
for African American Composers  visit:
Celebrating a Legacy of Excellence
Adolphus Hailstork at 80
April 2021-April  2022
Hailstork is regarded as 
the dean of African American Composers
A national project in progress by Hailstork 
Agent, Bill Doggett 
in collaboration with Music publisher,
Theodore Presser
Featured in The Music Player #1 are compositions of
Adolphus Hailstork, Trevor Weston, T.J. Anderson,  Alvin Singleton, Olly Wilson, Roque Codero, James Lee III, Bill Banfield, Billy Childs, George Walker, Julius P Williams, Jeffrey Mumford, Gary Powell Nash, Kevin Scott and Duke Ellington
Music of Black Women by Tania Leon, Eleanor Alberga, Valerie Coleman, Dorothy Rudd Moore, Mary Watkins, Nkeiru Okoye, Margaret Bonds, Florence Price and Alicia Hall Moran
The Art Songs of  Richard Thompson, H Leslie Adams, George Walker and Alicia Hall Moran
Iconic Spirituals adapted by Shawn Okpebholo and Damien Sneed
Piano, Violin and Chamber Music by Valerie Coleman, Dorothy Rudd Moore, Tania Leon, Margaret Bonds, Florence Price,Trevor Weston, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson, Joshua Uzoigwe , Adolphus Hailstork, David Baker, Anthony Green and Chad Hughes
Choral Music by Adolphus Hailstork,  Joel Thompson, James Newton and Trevor Weston
Music for Electronics by Brian Raphael Nabors
Music for Hammond Organ and Orchestra by Brian Raphael Nabors
Symphonic Band Music  by Adolphus Hailstork, James Lee III and Gary Powell Nash
Modern Ballet/Dance  Tania Leon
Opera: The political operas of Anthony Davis, X, The Life and Times of  Malcolm X and Amistad, The Slave Ship Opera and Nkeiru Okoye’s Harriet Tubman
Featured in Music Player #2 
lower page above Emancipation Proclamation are Negro Spirituals performed by Barbara Hendricks, Florence Quivar, Lawrence Brownlee, J’nai Bridges and Will Liverman
From Nkeiru Okoye’s opera, Harriet Tubman, I Am Moses, Gary Powell Nash’s In Memoriam Sojourner Truth and two excerpts from Anthony Davis’ Amistad, an opera about the famous slave ship rebellion
Featured in Music Player#3  Excerpts from iconic Symphonies
of William Grant Still, Florence Price and William Dawson composed 1934-37  They are Still’s Song of A New Race,Symphony#2, Florence Price’s Symphony #3 and William Dawson’s Negro Folk Song Symphony
Black Composers: Symphonic, Concerti, Chamber Music
Adolphus Hailstork, Anthony Davis,Trevor Weston, T.J. Anderson, Alvin Singleton, Olly Wilson, Roque Cordero, James Lee III, Trevor Weston, Carlos Simon, Brian Raphael Nabors,Kevin Day Jonathan Bailey Holland, Billy Childs, Michael Abels, Bill Banfield, George Walker, David Baker, Julius P Williams, Jeffrey Mumford, Primous Fountain, Kerwin Young, Ozie Cargile,Gary Powell Nash, Kevin Scott, Duke Ellington, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson, David Baker, Anthony Green, Chad Hughes, Joshua Uzoigwe, William Grant Still, Florence Price, William Dawson, Samuel Coleridge Taylor
 Black Women Composers  Tania Leon, Eleanor Alberga, Errollyn Wallen,Valerie Coleman, Jessie Montgomery, Courtney Bryan, Maria Corley Thompson,Alicia Hall Moran,  Dorothy Rudd Moore, Mary Watkins, Nkeiru Okoye, Margaret Bonds, Florence Price, Undine Smith Moore, Regina Baiocchi, Zenobia Powell Perry, Julia Perry
Choral Music  Adolphus Hailstork,  Roland Carter, Joel Thompson, Trevor Weston, Damien Geter and others
Opera  Anthony Davis, X, The Life and Times of  Malcolm X, Amistad, The Central Park Five, Tania, Terence Blanchard, Champion, Fire Shut Up In My Bones, Nkeiru Okoye’s Harriet Tubman and Operas by Richard Thompson, H Leslie Adams and Adolphus Hailstork
Symphonic Band  and Brass Ensemble Adolphus Hailstork, James Lee III and Gary Powell Nash, Kevin Day
Electronics-Mixed Media  Brian Raphael Nabors, Anthony R. Green, Karlton Hester, Olly Wilson
Organ Solo: Adolphus Hailstork 
Hammond Organ and Orchestra  Brian Raphael Nabors

In Memoriam

The Drum Major For African Americans in The Classical Performing Arts:The Late Conductor and Champion of Contemporary Black Composers’ Music, PAUL FREEMAN.

Founder of The Chicago Sinfonietta, Paul Freeman was one of the most influential musicians of color in the past 40 years to advocate for and make possible important new opportunities  for musicians and composers of color .   
Paul Freeman ushered in an awareness and provided a critical agency for the place of African Americans in the world of Contemporary American Classical Music.
The 1970s  Black Composers’ Series on Columbia Records which showcased 400 years of the music of composers of The African Diaspora is one of  Paul Freeman’s  important legacies.
 Rest In Peace, Drum Major Paul Freeman….  transitioned this week July 2015

The original 1970s Lp issue on Columbia Records

From The Bill Doggett Race, Early Sound Performing Arts Archive

Historic Tributes to Blackness in Recorded Sound