Compiled for the early music community by members and friends of EMA and the EMA Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access Taskforce.

External Repertoire Resources

BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) composers active before 1850

This list was initiated by a EMA member as a list of Black composers active before 1850. EMA and the IDEA Taskforce recognizes this is not an exhaustive list of BIPOC composers and invites others to use the form on this page to submit additional composers and resources for inclusion.

16th-century Portugal: Vicente Lusitano: Motets for 5-8 voices a capella

18th-century Mexico: Juan de Zumaya: Latin music, villancicos, and first compose an Italian texted opera in Western Hemisphere

18th-century Brazil: Jose Mauricio Nunes Garcia: Mostly choral; also opera and symphonic works

18th-century Brazil: Domingos Caldas Barbosa (1738-1800) – Brazilian modinha composer

18th-century England: Charles Ignatius Sancho: Songs and keyboard pieces

18th-century France: Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges: operas, symphonies, violin concertos, string quartets, duos for two violins, sonatas for keyboard and violin, sonata for harp and flute

18th century Bolivia: Blas Tardío de Guzmán (fl. 1740s), maestro de capilla at Sucre Cathedral (then called La Plata) who wrote “some really fine sacred music” (according to another EMA member)

18th-19th century Bolivia: Pedro Ximénez Abril Tirado (1784-1856), Chapel master at the Cathedral in Sucre, Bolivia. Considered the post prolific composer of the classical and early romantic periods in South America

19th-century Philadelphia, Francis Johnson published cotillions and other dance music in 1818

19th-century Brazil: Joaqium Manoel da Câmara (ca. 1780-1840), who wrote modinhas which were written down and arranged for keyboard accompaniment by Sigismund Neukomm

19th-century England: George Bridgetower: virtuoso violinist and composer and original dedicatee of Beethoven’s “Kreutzer Sonata”

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