Black in the Day…An Afro American Symphony

October 28, 1931: On this day, William Grant Still’s work became the first of its kind by a Black person to be performed by a major symphony orchestra. William Grant Still (May 11, 1895 – December 3, 1978) was an American composer of more than 150 works, including five symphonies and eight operas. Often referred to as “the Dean” of African-American composers, Still was the first American composer to have an opera produced by the New York City Opera.[1] Still is known most for his first symphony, the “Afro-American”, which was until the 1950s the most widely performed symphony composed…