June 3, 1953
Little Rock (Pulaski County) native Florence Price, the first African-American female composer to have a symphonic composition performed by a major American symphony orchestra, died in Chicago, Illinois. Her Symphony in E Minor had been performed on June 15, 1933, by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Frederick Stock. In her lifetime, Price composed more than 300 works, ranging from small teaching pieces for piano to large-scale compositions such as symphonies and concertos. Price’s Southern heritage had an obvious impact on her work, as the titles for some of her shorter works suggest: Arkansas Jitter, Bayou Dance, and Dance of the Cotton Blossoms.