Who was Margaret Allison Bonds?

Margaret Allison Bonds (1913–1972) became the first black American guest soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, performing Price’s Piano Concerto in F Minor” at the 1933 World’s Fair. Although Bonds was a skilled composer, her output is largely in the area of vocal music. Her arrangements of spirituals for solo voice and chorus are well known. Her arrangement of “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” commissioned and recorded in the 1960s by Leontyne Price, is among Bonds’s best-known pieces. Bonds was born in Chicago into a musical family. In high school she studied piano and composition with Florence Price and later William Dawson. She received her bachelor of music degree in 1933 and her master of music degree in 1934, both from Northwestern University. She remained active as a concert musician throughout her life.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy African American History Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App